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A 12-year-old girl, Annarella Bracci, was raped and killed in the popular borough of Primavalle, Rome, one of the age-old cross-roads of Italy, at the time it was going through major construction and road development projects.
Gino, a young and handsome tramp, stops in a small roadside inn run by Giovanna. She is unsatisfied with her older husband Bragana : she only married him for money. Gino and Giovanna fall in love. But Bragana is inhibiting for their passion, and Giovanna refuses to run away with Gino. Written by
You could watch it ten times and still delight in its nuances.
Wow! The sort of movie you could watch ten times and still delight in its nuances. Absolutely incredible! If this was Visconti's debut film, i shudder to think what would happen if he got any better from film to film. The only other one of his i've seen (at time of writing) is Death in Venice
which was absolutely incredible: more dazzling visually than Ossessione
(Obsession). One of the most beautiful films i've ever seen, but its story was not as involving as Ossessione. If you click on "miscellaneous" on this page's links, there are stills from the movie on those websites. They won't really do justice to the experience of the movie: such graceful camera movements, such beautiful composition, such wonderful faces, such terrific characters, such a great story development, the first movie adapted from James M Cain's "The Postman Always Rings Twice."
I can't believe this was made in 43, eight years before Brando was supposed to have introduced realistic acting to the world with Streetcar Named Desire (1951). The actors in this may not have used the method technique, ie they may not have truly felt everything themselves (i don't know anything about it) - but they're some of the best, most genuine and realistic performances up to this date in cinema. Also, eight years before Streetcar Named Desire brought a new sensuality to the screen, Ossessione was electrifyingly sensual! The most sensual thing since the beginning of cinema! Yes, i'm being superlative, but Ossessione was just that terrific.
The reason Ossessione didn't cause the impact Streetcar did was that it was made in fascist Italy and banned by Mussolini, and re-cut in America. American audiences didn't see its full glory till 59, eight years AFTER Streetcar.
I won't say any more about it - just writing to tell you its one of the best, most beautiful and exciting movies i've ever seen, and tell you to go out and see it! Like another reviewer, i'm going to buy it as soon as i can find it!
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