Fists in His Pocket (I pugni in tasca)

Critics Consensus

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Total Count: 6


Audience Score

User Ratings: 715
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Movie Info

This bizarre drama chronicles the strange activities of a family of mad epileptics and their blind mother, and of the terrible effects they have on the one healthy member of their clan, Mase. The young man really wants to get married, but he refuses to put his wife in the midst of his strange, tumultuous clan. His younger brother, Castel, understands his plight. To free his older brother, Castel decides to kill the rest of the family. Then Mase can have the inheritance and marry. After the killings, Castel retires to his room. As he listens to a series of operatic arias he has a severe seizure. The only one left to help him is Pitagora who refuses to assist.


Critic Reviews for Fists in His Pocket (I pugni in tasca)

All Critics (6) | Top Critics (1)

Audience Reviews for Fists in His Pocket (I pugni in tasca)

  • Sep 27, 2011
    It's like a wake-up call for modern families in such an absorbing society to reexamine their respective roles in their lives. Lou Castel offers a chilling performance as the core of a dysfunctional family with unclear priorities, his neverending torment being enhanced by an inner mental chaos supposedly surrounding him. What is really difficult is to make our index finger point towards what may or not be justifiable, as basically almost any topic can be seen from what Voltaire would define now as "double standards". 99/100
    Edgar C Super Reviewer
  • May 24, 2011
    Very interesting film. Quirky, yet chilling and at times very intense. At first you feel that Alessandro is only trying to help his older brother (the most "stable" fammily member) out and free him from his burdensome family obligations, but as the film progresses it becomes less clear as to what his motive is. Lou Castel does a wondeful job at keeping you guessing. Ultimately a very sad (but interesting) look at what has to be one of the MOST dysfunctional familes ever put to film.
    Robert C Super Reviewer
  • Mar 05, 2011
    Among classic Italian films of the '60s, "Fists in My Pocket" is an anomaly. There are no lavish sets or dazzling landscapes. No sense of a virtuoso director at work. There isn't even a flamboyant acting performance. Just a repressed, claustrophobic study of characters. The entire film takes place within one isolated home suggesting some degree of old wealth. The resident family is a mother, three sons and a daughter. Their last name is never given. The mother is blind. The first son, Augusto, is responsible and business-minded while the daughter, Giulia, is relatively stable and (let's face it) stunningly photogenic. But their problem brothers Leone and Alessandro are epileptic. Furthermore, Leone is a vacant idiot who's as helpless as a toddler and Alessandro...well, Alessandro is troubled. The plot is launched when Alessandro decides that Augusto is dragged down by all his dysfunctional family members and would be better off without them. So, he begins plotting to murder them. After he successfully eliminates the mother, he tells Giulia. And rather than turn him in, she ambivalently keeps his secret. See, they have the family's closest relationship -- perhaps because Giulia's caresses are the only remedy that helps Alessandro's seizures. Meanwhile, Augusto plans to get married and spend more time away from home. A home that will plunge into chaos without him. It doesn't take much imagination to realize this scenario will not end well. Ennio Morricone composed the music, but it's one of his least identifiable scores. It's more abstract and somewhat jazzy, and the only piece with his obvious signature is heard on a record that Alessandro briefly plays in his room.
    Eric B Super Reviewer
  • Nov 13, 2010
    This film is a selection from the Criterion Collection, Spine No #333. Like all movies in the Criterion Collection it is far from what is seen on the big screen in America. If you enjoy films that are somewhat different then I recommend that you venture in to this collection of over 400 plus films from some of the greatest directors in the world. This is about a young man who has seizures and has a sister, a mother who is blind, and a brother who is also handicapped, He wants to take the burden off his normal brother so he starts eliminating family members one by one. A 3 1/2 star performance.
    Bruce B Super Reviewer

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