Sunday, July 21, 2013

Ladri di biciclette (The Bicycle Thief) (1948)

Lately I've been watching a lot of films from the 1940's and this one really struck me.  Not only because of its stark realism, but that it could have been made today and have been no different.  Everyone was struggling there back then.  It was almost impossible to find a job, and people took whatever they can get.  Same way we have recent college graduates working at Burger King and will wait years before anything is available in their field.

Antonio Ricci is someone who needs a job for his family, and actually gets one!  It requires a bicycle to go around town one.  Unfortunately, someone nicks it while he's on the job.  If he doesn't get this bike back, he'll lose his means of supporting his family.

Ricci, his friends, and his son Bruno, scour the city looking for the bike.  They also go to the market to look for bike parts, because it could have been stripped for its parts and sold bit by bit.  I had no idea Italians were so serious about their bikes!  The bike market was impressive.  It becomes apparent that the bike isn't just for his job, but for living a normal life as well.  Also, Ricci takes his son out to eat even though he's broke because he wants to show that he can take care of him and not to worry.  It's not his son's responsibility to worry, it's his own job.

Does Ricci get his bike back?  No, but life isn't always about happiness.  This movie left me feeling empty and hopeless about the future.  Even now, there are no jobs here.  At all.  I'm giving this film a 7/10.

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