In the little Italian city of Cremona there dwelt Taddeo Ferrari, a violin maker and student of Andrea Amati, the most famous of the craft. Ferrari's pretty daughter, Giannina, was beloved ... See full summary »
In the little Italian city of Cremona there dwelt Taddeo Ferrari, a violin maker and student of Andrea Amati, the most famous of the craft. Ferrari's pretty daughter, Giannina, was beloved by one of his apprentices, Sandro. Filippo, a crippled youth and the best violin maker in Cremona, also loved the girl with a pure, holy affection that is more spiritual than material, but realizing his unattractiveness through his deformity, suffers his hopelessness with resignation. Yearly there is a prize of a precious chain of gold awarded to the maker of the best violin, and all the apprentices strive to win it. On this occasion, however, the hand of Giannina is to be bestowed upon the most proficient craftsman, and this induces the young men to make extra efforts to win. Sandro fully appreciates the rare talent of Filippo and feels sure his wonderful skill will win his sweetheart from him. Crushed and despairing he seeks out Giannina and tells her his fears, she tearfully acknowledging the ... Written by
Moving Picture World synopsis
Interesting Story, But Filmed With Little Imagination or Skill
This is a flawed attempt to film an otherwise worthwhile story. The narrative of "The Violin Maker of Cremona" is nothing weighty or complex, but it has enough substance to work as a short story, and it could have made a pretty good one-reeler. In this movie, though, things just don't work very well. It misses a lot of the potential in the story, and it does not really stand out in any cinematic way, either.
The story begins with two apprentice violin makers who are in love with the same young woman, and who both hope to win the same violin-making contest. As things develop from this starting point, the basic story-line is clear, but much of the action is inadequately explained and/or unclear. The physical effects of the film's age don't help in this respect, but that does not explain away all of the flaws. Moreover, there was a lot of potential for drama and emotion that is never developed or used. Thus, the small amount of dramatic tension that it generates soon fizzles out.
Just a little bit of imagination could have given this film a lot more impact. Given the director, it is surprising how little skill there is in this feature. Probably the only thing really notable about it is the chance to see a young Mary Pickford in one of her early roles.
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