In this adaptation of the Thomas Mann novel, avant-garde composer Gustave Aschenbach (loosely based on Gustav Mahler) travels to a Venetian seaside resort in search of repose after a period... See full summary »
The widow Rosaria moves to Milano from Lucania with her 4 sons, one of whom is Rocco. The fifth son, Vincenzo, already lives in Milano. In the beginning, the family has a lot of problems, but everyone manages to find something to do. Simone is boxing, Rocco works in a dry cleaners, and Ciro studies. Simone meets Nadia, a prostitute, and they have a stormy affair. Then Rocco, after finishing his military service, begins a relationship with her. A bitter feud ensues between the two brothers, which will lead as far as murder... Written by
Kornel Osvart <firstname.lastname@example.org>
The year 1960 was one of the most impressive in cinema history, at least for Europe. It is the year of The Virgin Spring, L'Aventura and the Godard debut A Bout de Soufflé. The latter movie signals the emergence of the French Nouvelle Vague, maybe more so than Resnais' Hiroshima mon amour or 400 Coupes released a year earlier. All these movies are different approaches to cinema, different in their intentions and outlook but similar in quality. We are not dealing here with art-house movies. Pejorativelly used this term refers to movies nobody really likes because they're too odd to be understood. This art-house fever was especially contagious in European cinema. But, for at least two decades, that is the 50's and 60's, Europe came up with amazing movies, with interesting plots, great direction and cinematography and a great number of landmark actors.
Rocco e i suoi fratelli stars Alain Delon and Renato Salvatori in a story that combines drama, romance, and action surrounding a family that moves from the countryside in southern Italy to Milano where life is hard and challenging even for the toughest. The story will keep you glued to the screen in spite of its length of almost three hours. However I graded the movie only with an eight because I found some of the acting, and especially the title roles to be somewhat exaggerated. Maybe Visconti couldn't get the feeling of neorealism the same way as De Sica and he couldn't push from within it to a different direction as Fellini or Pasolini did. At the beginning of the 60's the heydays of neorealism were gone. De Sica's La Ciociara was already beginning to show signs of fatigue. But the best of this movie lies in the direction and photography. It is here that Rocco manages to stand among that year's greatest. L'Aventura received a prize at Venezzia for cinematography, Nykvist created a truly magic scenery for Bergman's The Virgin Spring and A Bout de Soufflé was stunning in it's intelligent mockery of the 40's American noir movies.
With Visconti and more generally Italian cinema you are always in good hands, so there will always be something in these movies even though the whole may have some problems with the proportion between elements. The artistic eye of Visconti transforms the dull environment of the industrialized city into something that it almost becomes odd the characters don't stop whatever they're doing and enjoy the landscape.
The movie also features a great score from Nino Rota, used very effectively by the director
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