Rocco and His Brothers (Rocco e i suoi fratelli) (1961)
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as Rocco Parondi
as Simone Parondi
as Rosaria Parondi
as Boxing Impresario
as Vincenzo Parondi
as Ciro Parondi
as Luca Parondi
as Ciro's Fiancee
as Laundry Worker
as Laundry Worker
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Critic Reviews for Rocco and His Brothers (Rocco e i suoi fratelli)
"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.
Audience Reviews for Rocco and His Brothers (Rocco e i suoi fratelli)
Though unnecessarily overlong for the kind of story it wants to tell and tending at times more towards 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 :)
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