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All Critics (25)
| Top Critics (8)
| Fresh (23)
| Rotten (2)
| DVD (3)
"Rocco and His Brothers" is a film both authentic and ambitious, a classic that is as adept at telling individual stories as it is in drawing larger parallels from them.
Visconti's methods are still partly neorealist, but the scale of the film is huge and operatic, and it loses the intimacy of the best neorealist films, and their breath of life.
Today, distanced from ridiculous controversy and dislocated from the provincial politics that drive its story, this immaculately restored classic of post-WWII Italian cinema often feels like a new experience altogether.
The Parondis' lives are difficult but gorgeous; boxing is terrible but riveting; the city offers everything even as it takes everything away.
There is in this strong and surging drama of an Italian peasant family's shattering fate in the face of the brutalizing forces of unfamiliar modern city life a kind of emotional fullness and revelation that one finds in the great tragedies of the Greeks.
Neither neo-realist nor particularly artsy, Rocco might make for a fat, satisfying beach-read of a movie if only it weren't so convinced of its own magnitude.
... an epic of postwar Italy and a melodrama of seismic proportions boasting great photography and performances...
Here, Visconti has every sort of strong contrast -Italy's two nations, the north and the south, industry and the land, simplicity and sophistication.
It's vital about violence being bred from systemic blind spots, where miniscule souls are tasked with the impossible.
What you end up with is more an entertaining, overheated mish-mash than a great classic.
One of Visconti's and Italian cinema's masterpieces
Powerful neorealist melodrama.
Although unnecessarily overlong for the kind of story it wants to tell and sometimes tending more toward soap opera melodrama than neorealism, especially in a cathartic scene in the end, this is a spellbinding, moving and brutal film with a great score and a powerful social commentary.
Beautiful, brilliant, and brutal! A universal tale of man and his environment. This film can be viewed as a social commentary of Southern versus Northern Italy and five different adaptations to modernization. The five brothers are compared to the five fingers on a hand ~ joined, yet each posits alternatives to existence. Structurally, this is shown in the films chapters devoted to each son. Vincenzo elects the petit-bourgeouis mileu; Simone, the brother with initial promise, maladapts, descending to animalism; Rocco chooses sacrifice, holding steadfast to the family clan and nostalgia; Ciro reveals integration within Milan society; and, finally, Luca offers promise. Visconti masterfully builds tension and characterization with the cinematic details of lighting, music, and montage.
the melodramatic tale of a close-knit family's move from the rural south to the big northern city of milan, where everything gets complicated. once again visconti managed to suck me into a 3 hour epic. the film has two things i generally enjoy, boxing and a young alain delon. delon is beautifully restrained right up until the final scene as the too-good-to-be-true rocco, who sacrifices everything, including the woman he loves, in an attempt to hold his family together. this is quite a different role for him, best known for his supercool criminal characters of the 60's. even better is renato salvatori as his amoral brother simone, and annie girardot as the prostitute who comes between them, leading ultimately to their destruction. there are a couple of really brutal scenes and the climax is overwrought to the point of opera. it's been said visconti cast the film with his dick but he draws gritty performances from his gorgeous actors and they are certainly lovely to watch :)
Rocco and his Brothers probably has some sort of socialist hidden meaning, I'm sure of it. But since I didn't see it, I'm writing from my point of view -I am warning you that there's much more to look for in here than what I might have found-. Rocco ei suoi fratelli centers on a family of five brothers and a widowed mother. They move up to Milan from middle Italy, leaving their homeland behind. At first they struggle to adapt to the conditions of the city, all the while maintaining themselves a close-knit traditional family. But as the second oldest son begins to develop a successful boxing career, the vices inherent to a citadin life begin to get in the way of their harmony, embodied by the callgirl (Annie Girardot) he takes as girlfriend. She brings dischord between brothers by falling later for Rocco, the second to youngest. He is all goodness, forgiveness, and fanatical about his family and his traditions, played very movingly by Alain Delon.
As the story unfolds, Simone -the boxer brother- begins to grow fatter and weary, whereas Rocco begins to shine in the same sport... this stirs up jealousy and fear, respectively. When Simone loses the prostitute's love, Rocco wins it, and a dangerous rivalry is thus born. Simone, the decrepit figure -the citadin, corrupted by Milan- becomes Rocco's -the saintly, the countryman- worst enemy. He beats Rocco unconscious after finding him with the girl one evening, and then proceeds to humiliate her in his presence... yet his little brother insists that he should give her up, send her back to Simone, and forgive his brutality. The forces of extreme evil and extreme goodness seem to collide in a series of dramatic sequences, and it is self-evident that neither is ideal. Rocco's irrational good nature harms, instead of protects, him and his loved ones; the same can be said, of course, of Simone's over-the-top machismo.
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