Monday, August 29, 2011


‘In my hometown where I was born…I left my heart there forlorn.’

What a movie! Stamped as overwhelming tragedy from beginning to end with its two hours forty nine minutes epical running time. It’s emotionally powerful, intensify the characters and uplift the melodrama and tragedy like Shakespeare’s classic tragedies where man’s predominant flaw responsible for his doom and also like Greek Masters where fate is responsible for tragedy. The film was made by Luchino Visconti, the torchbearer of Italian Neo Realistic cinema. However he kept the shades of neorealist cinema intact, it’s an idealistic film about a family consists of a widow mother and his four sons who came to city of Milan to make their fortune along with their fifth brother and soon one after other tragedy keep striking its notes and bringing the doom to such a fine family.

Visconti gave space to each brothers and the poor mother who till climax unaware about the doom and all the cast gave their consummate best to the film immaterial to their screen presence. But the three key figures of the film juxtaposed to one another are Rocco played by then so young Alain Delon. Simone played by Renato Salvatori and the whore named Nadia who becomes the reason of love and hate between two brothers. Rocco is represented as a saint, always forgiving and sacrificing for the sake of his ill fated brother Simone and family and Simone is the only brother who completely gone astray with emotions of jealousy and possessive love that he can’t resist and than he’s slowly trade into the path of alcohol, debt, rape and even murder.

Annie Girardot, as Nadia is the most brilliant performance of the film in my opinion. Being whore, she’s the outsider and outcast to the family, to the world and yet she is just irresistible figure who’s life torn apart by the jealousy of one brother and the brotherly love of another. She’s the real tragedy of the film. I can go on and on describing the best scenes of the film and there’s so many of them leaving their impact on memory for long time. The moral of the film was perhaps made clear in the climax where in the celebration the party of his boxing win Rocco expressed his wish to return his homeland and said to the youngest brother, ‘Remember Luca, ours is the land of the olive tree, the moon and rainbows.’ The final neorealist frames serves the metaphor of hope where the youngest brother Luca watching the photos of his admirable brother Rocco on newspapers hanging on street. Nino Rota’s evocative score is something to pay your ears in that final frame. It is said that Francis Ford Coppola was such a big fan of this film that he hired composer Nino Rota to score for his masterpiece ‘The Godfather’. But apart of that, the film is inspirational for many directors around the world.

Masterpiece that doesn't require ratings.

1 comment:

Jitendra Kapadiya said...

As you said it masterpiece, my instincts dominating me to watch it. I've to search for it.