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Il Bidone (1955)
"Il bidone" (original title)

 -  Comedy | Drama  -  October 1962 (USA)
7.6
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Ratings: 7.6/10 from 2,690 users  
Reviews: 22 user | 22 critic

A trio of con-men lead by a lonesome swindler must deal with their job and family pressures.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Augusto
...
Iris
...
Picasso
Franco Fabrizi ...
Roberto
Sue Ellen Blake ...
Anna
Irene Cefaro ...
Marisa
Alberto De Amicis ...
Rinaldo
Lorella De Luca ...
Patrizia
Giacomo Gabrielli ...
Il Baron Vargas
Riccardo Garrone ...
Riccardo
Paul Grenter
Emilio Manfredi
Lucetta Muratori
Mario Passante
Sara Simoni
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Storyline

Aging small-time con man Augusto, who swindles peasants, works with two younger men: Roberto, who wants to become the Italian Johnny Ray, and Bruno, nicknamed Picasso, who has a wife and daughter and wants to paint. Augusto avoids the personal entanglements, spending money at clubs seeking the good life. His attitude changes when he runs into his own daughter, whom he rarely sees, and realizes she's now a young woman and in need of his help to continue her studies. His usual partners are away, so he goes in with others to run a swindle, and they aren't forgiving when he claims he's given the money back to their mark. They leave him beaten, robbed, and alone. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Certificate:

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Details

Country:

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Language:

Release Date:

October 1962 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Il Bidone  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

(original)

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

French visa # 17397 (original version) and 17367/D (dubbed version) See more »

Goofs

When Augusto and his daughter are sitting in the open-air café, the watch he is giving to his daughter jumps from his hand to on her wrist immediately. See more »

Quotes

Augusto: [Reerring contemptuously to his con-artist partners] LBook who I ended up with - wimps being supported by women!
man: It's common today.
Augusto: I was necer like that! I always had style. I went arond the world ripping everybody off. The world is full of idiots. I can sell ice to Eskimos. Now I work with these amateurs, but I'll be working again alone soon.
See more »

Connections

Edited into Histoire(s) du cinéma: La monnaie de l'absolu (1998) See more »

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User Reviews

 
The middle chapter in Fellini's "trilogy of loneliness"
23 February 2007 | by (Virginia, USA) – See all my reviews

The middle chapter in Fellini's "trilogy of loneliness", made by a master between "La Strada" (1954), and "Nights of Cabiria," (1957), "Il Bidone" (1955) is less known, for long time simply forgotten (and I can't imagine why) but powerful, humorous, heartbreaking, and poignant film. Broderick Crawford, Academy Award winner for playing Willie Stark, a corrupt politician and a charismatic man in "All the King's Men" (1949), gives a compelling performance as Augusto, an aging con man, a leader of a trio of small time crooks who take advantage of poor and uneducated Italians in both country side and poor quarters of Rome. Augusto realizes at the age of 48 that his life of selfishness, greed, and wrongdoings only made his existence meaningless. Once in his life, he decided to con the con men in order to help his daughter whom he rarely sees but deeply loves with fulfilling her dreams of better life but a swindle gone wrong leads Augusto to the final scene of pain, both physical and mental, to loneliness and desperation. It is very much like "Nights of Cabiria" final scene but without eternal hope of Cabiria's smile…

Technically, "Il Bidone" is a very strong film with memorable performances, including the smaller cameos. Fellini's directing is as satisfying as always and many scenes remind of his future triumphs (New Year party is a stunning sequence and brings to mind "La Dolce Vita", 1960 ). Nino Rota's music and Otello Martinelli's cinematography add to many pleasures of the film, one of them is Giulietta Masina who plays supporting role of Iris, the wife of Picasso (Richard Basehart), the younger con artist with a dream to become an Artist. Both, Masina and Basehart starred in Fellini's first chapter of "trilogy of loneliness", "La Strada" (1954).


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