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Anita Garibaldi (1952)
"Camicie rosse" (original title)

 -  Drama | History  -  18 March 1954 (USA)
6.8
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The story of Giuseppe Garibaldi's 1849 campaign to free Italy from Austrian domination. Although the defence of Rome has become impossible, Garibaldi declares his intent to continue the ... See full summary »

Directors:

(as G. Alessandrini) , (as F. Rosi)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Alain Cuny ...
Bueno
Jacques Sernas ...
Gentile
Carlo Ninchi ...
Ciceruacchio (as C. Ninchi)
Enzo Cerusico ...
Il figlio di Ciceruacchio (as E. Cerusico)
Gino Leurini ...
Andrea (as G. Leurini)
Mario Monosilio ...
Giovanni (as M. Monosilio)
Marisa Natale ...
Rosa (as M. Natali)
Emma Baron ...
La signora Guiccioli (as E. Baron)
Carlo Duse ...
Bonnert (as C. Duse)
Cesare Fantoni ...
Il generale Oudinot (as C. Fantoni)
Rodolfo Lodi ...
Il colonello Forbes (as R. Lodi)
Bruno Smith ...
Gustavo Mioni (as B. Smith)
Pietro Tordi ...
Carlo Ferrari (as P. Tordi)
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Storyline

The story of Giuseppe Garibaldi's 1849 campaign to free Italy from Austrian domination. Although the defence of Rome has become impossible, Garibaldi declares his intent to continue the struggle for republican liberty and a unified Italy. With a following of four thousand men he begins a march across the Apennines with the aim of reaching Venice which is under siege but still resisting. However, the Bourbons and the Austrians pursue the volunteers who have in their ranks Frattini, a traitor secretly working to disunite the small but brave force. Many in fact desert and even the most loyal officer, Bueno, gives in to Frattini's proposals to impose summary justice. Anita Garibaldi, whom her husband had left behind in Rome because she was expecting a baby, rejoins him, and her influence, courage and vivacity succeed in restoring unity. San Marino gives refuge to the surviving force and the Austrians offer a cease-fire. But the terms of surrender proposed by the Austrians are so severe ... Written by Jim Marshall

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | History

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Release Date:

18 March 1954 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Anita Garibaldi  »

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Technical Specs

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Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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User Reviews

 
ANITA GARIBALDI (Goffredo Alessandrini and Francesco Rosi, 1952) ***
21 April 2011 | by (Naxxar, Malta) – See all my reviews

This is a feature-length remake of the 1910 Silent one-reeler I recently watched about this same historical figure or, rather, it deals more elaborately with the events with which she (and her more famous spouse, Giuseppe) was involved. Incidentally, I was unaware of the film before being broadcast as a matinée' on Italian TV on the occasion of the 150th anniversary of the unification of Italy. The film also happened to mark the unofficial debut of co-director Rosi, later a major exponent of comparable political themes: he was engaged after star/producer/uncredited writer Anna Magnani quarreled with original helmer Alessandrini (a veteran of large-scale, if old-school, productions like ABUNA MESSIAS {1939} and his masterpiece, the two-parter WE, THE LIVING {1942}).

Magnani managed to recruit an impressive supporting cast – headed by Raf Vallone obviously playing her husband in a younger and more handsome guise than he is usually depicted! Incidentally, the film was a co-production between Italy and France, so that a number of actors from the latter country were given prominent roles – notably Alain Cuny as Garibaldi's lieutenant (who later begins to have doubts with respect to their cause but is soon back on patriotic track), Jacques Sernas as a young member of the "Red Shirts" (as the 4,000-strong rebel outfit was known) who no sooner has he recovered from a war wound that he is ready to take up arms once more, and Serge Reggiani as a layabout who becomes the subtle dissenting voice within the group and is eventually revealed to have been in the enemy's pay all along (of course, he will get his just desserts – in a surprisingly noir-like mood and one of the film's best scenes – long before the end)!

As for the star, she is surprisingly restrained here – though this has to do with the fact that the character is sick through much of the proceedings (spending the virtually the entire last act pining for water!) more than anything else. However, her portrayal is undeniably forceful, and she is still vociferous when the need arises (usually to hold the "Red Shirts" together during periods of particular strife or while her husband is occupied elsewhere)! Incidentally, while her death in this version occurs in the home of a supporter, in the earlier short she expires in a remote hut while fleeing the enemy.

Anyway, while there is little action per se, the hardships of battle and the constant marching to elude detection are evident on each weather-beaten face (among the members of Garibaldi's band of soldiers are a stout father and his spirit teenage son, both of whom eventually end up before the firing squad!). Unfortunately, the copy I watched suffered from a constant (but thankfully not too distracting) audio glitch where all the background noise came off as 'processed'.


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