Massimo Girotti's attitude as Gino is perfect - when the husband Giuseppe calls for him to eat as he plays harmonica, we can feel his thoughts of not wanting to respond to this old fat man in the way of his love.
Terrific, possible foreshadow framing of razor over Giuseppe. Beautiful transition when the artist blows his match out next to Gino in bed. Though it's not a razor Gino ends up killing him with, it is murder that he commits, and ultimately haunts his relationship. They seemed trapped, as if by karmic forces from the past, in a forbidden love.
Giovanna is encountering the same problem in Gino she had with her husband, him talking about her like she's not there, framed against an impressionist dusk shot of the river. She walks into a kitchen full of unmanageable dirty dishes, and she just starts eating - no cleaning will get done tonight, she falls asleep.
The hotter younger girl Anita comes back to her room finding Gino waiting, carrying a bottle of milk. When we cut back to Giovanna, she seems less and less attractive in her funerary garb, doing disgusting things like blowing her nose at the table, stalking insecurely, obsessively.
The ending is absolutely perfect, a cruel twist of fate coming full circle. We started the film inside the truck, driving along a clear path towards the Bragana home,Gino in the back of he truck sneaking his way into this world. Now Gino is escaping it as the driver, obscured by exhaust from the truck in front of him, on the run from everything but unable to get past. In between this framework is a third incident with the truck, the murder of Giuseppe off a levee. Now everything collides as Gino tries to pass, an attempt to escape from the truth they're both running from. Giovanna suffers the cruel fate of death, and Gino will be stuck as an imprisoned murderer for the rest of his life - there is no escape after the truck is knocked off the levee trying to pass. Karma is a bitch.
It is wonderful seeing a director finding a voice with his first film. It is a classic; it feels modern and hasn't aged (apart from some conventions like the panning of camera as a seexual metaphor and such). On the contrary, sometimes it feels more raw than new films; and yet it remains poetic and humanistic deep down.