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Mid-Century Loves (1954)

Amori di mezzo secolo (original title)
Film a episodi. L'AMORE ROMANTICO. Elena, di nobile famiglia, ama il pianista Mario, ma il padre vuole che sposi un pretendente nobile e ricco. Con un inganno, la zia riesce ad indurre la ... See full summary »

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(screenplay), (screenplay) (as Alessandro Continenza) | 9 more credits »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Mario (segment "Amore romantico, L'")
...
Elena (segmant 'Amore romantico, L')
Paola Borboni ...
Elena's aunt (segment "Amore romantico, L'")
Carlo Ninchi ...
Elena's father (segment "Amore romantico, L'")
Luigi Tosi ...
Count Edoardo Savelli (segment "Amore romantico, L'")
Lea Padovani ...
Isabella (segment "Girandola 1910")
Andrea Checchi ...
Gabriele (segment "Girandola 1910")
Umberto Melnati ...
Cocò, the politician (segment "Girandola 1910")
Carlo Campanini ...
Michelangelo, the doctor (segment "Girandola 1910")
Lily Granado ...
(segment "Girandola 1910")
Franco Scandurra ...
(segment "Girandola 1910")
Scilla Vannucci ...
(segment "Girandola 1910")
Edith Jost ...
(segment "Girandola 1910")
Maria Pia Casilio ...
Carmela (segment "Guerra 1915-18")
Albino Cocco ...
Antonio (segment "Guerra 1915-18")
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Storyline

Film a episodi. L'AMORE ROMANTICO. Elena, di nobile famiglia, ama il pianista Mario, ma il padre vuole che sposi un pretendente nobile e ricco. Con un inganno, la zia riesce ad indurre la fanciulla ad acconsentire alle nozze non volute. 1910. Nel periodo che precede la prima guerra mondiale, un medico favorisce con i suoi consulti gli adulteri dei suoi clienti. Un giorno, però, la scoperta del tradimento della propria moglie conclude degnamente la sua poco nobile attività. GUERRA 1915/18. Durante la prima guerra mondiale, Carmela e Antonio, due giovani abruzzesi, si sposano e aspettano un figlio. Antonio, chiamato alle armi, raggiunge il fronte e muore in battaglia proprio giorno in cui la moglie partorisce. EPOCA FASCISTA. Nell'ottobre del 1922, Alberto, infervorato per il fascismo, lascia il paese d'origine e la fidanzata, Susanna, e parte per Roma. Qui il suo entusiasmo si spegne nei locali notturni e nelle brevi avventure. Susanna, che è venuta a Roma per darsi al cinema, stuzzica... Written by rosebud6

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

18 February 1954 (Italy)  »

Also Known As:

Amores de medio siglo  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

,  »
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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Ferraniacolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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User Reviews

Two out of five is okay...
24 October 2011 | by (London) – See all my reviews

A compendium film of the sort which were so popular with Italian producers (and presumably audiences) throughout the fifties and sixties and, like so many of them, a very mixed bag. The idea is an ironic disquisition on love at five different points from 1900 to 1943 and three of the episodes suggest that, either through the producers' whim or budgetary restraints, an artificial, almost fin de siecle style was being imposed. The most notable directors, however, Rossellini and Germi, have resisted and insisted on getting their camera outside into the fresh air, so that ultimately there's no unifying manner at all.

First up is Pellegrini with a predictable, arch tale about a woman from a noble family who loves a pianist but whose father and aunt push her toward marrying the wealthy count who can resurrect the family fortune. Staid and starchy, it can only safely by recommended to lovers of ambulant waxworks.

Not much better, alas, is Germi's story of a young couple who decide to marry even though they feel certain that the first world war will drag them apart. The plot is horribly schematic and the material finds the director (who wasn't responsible for the screenplay) at his most sentimental. There's a little glint of the wit and acerbity which would make later films like SEDOTTA E ABANDONATTA such gems in his depiction of the elderly school teacher but, even as a fan, I feel I'm clutching at straws.

Chiari gives us a wildly overplayed comedy about a fascist leaving his small village and going to see the glories of Rome, exchanging his black shirt for a tux and becoming quite the ladies' man at the casino

  • until his old girlfriend comes looking for him and neatly turns the


tables on him. It's not really funny enough and would have been better had it been subtler (it also doesn't make much sense: where does the young man's money come from and, assuming he has any, why is he reduced to begging to be a movie extra?) but it marks the film's up-swing in quality.

Predictably, Rossellini does best with a fragment of a tale about an extra and a recovering soldier taking refuge from an air raid in Napoli in 1943 and, perhaps against her better judgement, falling in love. The tragic ending isn't earned and looks tacked on but otherwise this is superbly shot (you'd know it was Rossellini even without the credit), with some nicely judged comedy from a trio of peddlers.

Finally, an elegant roundelay from Pietrangeli (a director who strikes me as being ripe for re- evaluation) with a doctor discovering he's much in demand by men and women who want to take lovers. Some brilliant editing turn this into a whirlwind of cynical fun. None of the tales is above fifteen minutes in length, so even the less successful ones don't outstay their welcome and the result is pleasant entertainment that, on balance, probably deserves to be better known.


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