Open City - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Open City Reviews

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½ October 19, 2016
Open City is a genuine portrait of Italian life during wartime expertly created by Roberto Rossellini who's daring visuals and scenes put the audience right in the same place as the characters.
February 27, 2016
A importância histórica é infindável. Tão forte como documento de uma época e de maneira inconteste, com sua produção em 1945, logo na saída da Segunda Grande Guerra.
February 3, 2016
Open City initially presents an ambiguous view of the Church. The first Church representative we meet is the sexton who genuflects before joining the looting of a bakery. This hypocritical moment seems to be mocking not only the sexton but also the performative nature of Catholic reverence. The Church's main official, Don Pietro, is presented as a comical buffoon. He is introduced trying to keep up with the children while they play soccer; he ineffectually blows his whistle before the ball finally lands on his head. Moreover, he is incapable of exerting any control over or gaining the respect of these children. Later, running an errand for the Resistance, he acts prudish, worrying over the placement of a statue depicting a saint and a naked woman. Although he is in the midst of a serious and important task, his religious beliefs cause him to worry over an insignificant detail.

In contrast to Don Pietro, the portly middle-aged clown, are the young and handsome communists: Francesco and Manfredi. These two men are who the children aspire to be. The kids roam the streets wreaking havoc and referring to each other as "comrades." Pina sheepishly admits to Manfredi that she believes in God, and her main defense for her desire to be wed in a church is that it is preferable to being wed by a fascist in town hall. As it turns out, the atheist Resistance fighters embody what the people hope to be. The Church is a present force, but a largely incompetent and ridiculous one.

The Church gets redemption, however, in the final moments of Open City. Don Pietro refuses to relinquish the Resistance fighters, despite their lack of religious beliefs, and expresses an enlightened note of tolerance. Meanwhile, Manfredi's torture is reminiscent of the martyrdom of Christ, supporting the idea that religious ideals are powerful and relevant to the time frame of the film. At Don Pietro's execution, all the children who previously showed him no respect come out to mourn him. As they walk away, they are framed against a landscape of Rome, which prominently shows St. Peter's Church. Though the Church has flaws and weaknesses, Rossellini is establishing it - specifically in the form expressed by Don Pietro - as the bedrock of Italian society.
½ January 24, 2016
One of the quintessential films about the honest terror of the Nazi regime that still feels freshly wounded from the real thing.
January 6, 2016
I went to see this on the big screen at a movie theatre thinking I'd see it because it is considered one of the greatest films of all time and an a turning point in film making because it is helped bring in Italian Neo Realism which means that it brought realism to cinema. A new form of filming which wanted to be as realistic as possible. What I didn't expect was to be so engaged, to care so much for the characters, and to root for the protagonists so much. This is a story of everyday life during war but also a suspenseful thriller as resistance people try to stay one step ahead of the Nazis.
September 12, 2015
This one had an impact on the world, Italian cinema, and anyone who watched it from the time of it's release until today. It's a gritty, authentic, and heartbreaking experience.
½ September 3, 2015
Rome, Open City is a film filled with anger, an active work of rebellion against the German occupiers who committed crimes like the ones portrayed, and this anger is what makes it so compelling. Shockingly, for a film about a fascist police state, it's surprisingly funny, these moments of humor only serving to underline the atrocities carried out. Capturing an honest piece of Italian history while serving as an indictment of fascism, Rome, Open City is a powerful piece of filmmaking and a landmark in Italian cinema.
August 9, 2015
It must be said that neorealist style, like most styles, does not inherently carry a particular political meaning. The most common stylistic attribute of neorealist films was location shooting which enabled camera movement and a more open mise-en-scene. A feature of some films was the use of nonprofessional actors. But there was more to neorealism than technique. Andre Bazin, the French critic who was one of neorealism's strongest advocates, wrote that "neorealism is more an ontological position than an aesthetic one. That is why the employment of its technical attributes like a recipe do not necessarily produce it."' In other words, more than an artistic stance, neorealism embodied an attitude toward life.
April 5, 2015
A few brave Italians stand up against the Gestapo & impossible odds, with terrible consequences, in this early neorealist classic.
Super Reviewer
½ November 17, 2014
This quintessential classic of neorealism is an unsettling and hard-hitting portrait of an era, shot in a gritty documentary-like style and with a gallery of fascinating characters that represent, each one of them, a facet of Roman society under Nazi German occupation.
October 24, 2014
Deep, historical film...it was recommended to me and I did my homework before watching - it helped me undrstand the depth of the film...Fantastic
September 8, 2014
Open City is a very realistic and fine film that proves to be a great and powerfully told experience
March 16, 2014
An important cinematic document of the Italian neo-realist period.
½ January 23, 2014
Films like Rome, Open City and Bicycle thieves are few of those rare crafts of bygone filmmakers which dignifies the industry and glorifies the history of films. A Neorealist film of equally substantial elements, a superb film in general.
½ October 2, 2013
this brought a new language neo-realist to movies shot doc style on the streets cos there was no studios post WWII cincitta was army barracks
September 27, 2013
Guardare la data di uscita nelle sale (1945) e poi vedere il film. Bastano questi due elementi per capire la grandezza di tale film.
½ September 25, 2013
Critically hailed as the era-defining film on Italian neo-realism featuring the Fascist resistance, the film is a truthful revelation of people's lives under the Mussolini regime. More importantly, it symbolizes the reconciliation between the revolutionists and Catholics, which is of historical significance in Italy. However, the truthful reflection doesn't guarantee a pleasant viewing experience, for it is a little bit dated in modern world.
½ August 24, 2013
Amazing film about the Nazi occupation of Rome. Very powerful story and characters that deal with some harsh and controversial subjects for a movie from 1945. The unwed, single mother as a main character is especially surprising given the era. Rossellini directs a masterpiece and given that he took to the streets immediately after the Nazi occupation of Rome ended it has an authenticity that can not be underappreciated.
½ July 27, 2013
From this film come two of the greatest lines in film history: "I believe that those who fight for justice and truth walk in the path of God and the paths of God are infinite." "We have sown Europe with corpses... and from those graves rises an unquenchable hate."
½ June 16, 2013
Very compelling. Great music.

This is what Battle of Algiers would look like if Battle of Algiers was a) good, b) told from the point of view of non-terrorists. Maybe that'll teach Italians to not support fascism in the future. The German chick was weird & left me feeling so. My first Rossellini movie. Can't say it was a disappointment.
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