Based on a true incident, this tells the story of a troubled young man who kills his sister's reactionary, violent and abusive husband and is eventually arrested for the murder. However, ... See full summary »
Based on a true incident, this tells the story of a troubled young man who kills his sister's reactionary, violent and abusive husband and is eventually arrested for the murder. However, the dead husband happened to be a member of the Italian nobility, and the trial starts to turn into more of a prosecution of the defendant's socialist politics and the activities of his father, a well known liberal social reformer, than the actual crime itself. Written by
In every Italian courtroom, over the judicial bench, appears the expression "The la is equal for everyone." The director of FATTI DI GENTE PERBENE ("La Grande Bourgeoise" in America) has recreated an episode from Italy's past which puts a lie to that phrase. The story is set in turn-or-the century Bologna. The main protagonists are Augusto Turri, a liberal doctor, his socialist/lawyer son Tullio and his daughter Linda. She is trapped in an unhappy marriage to a petty tyrant, whom she and her family loathe. Her brother kills the husband "to put an end to this sentence blessed by the Holy Roman Church." The rest of the film shows how the Catholic conservative alliance and the court are more interested in prosecuting the family for what they are rather than for what one murderer did. This is a kind of Sacco and Vanzetti story in some ways. The acting in this film is superb: Fernando Rey as the father, Giancarlo Giannini as the son, lovely Catherine Deneuve as the unhappy daughter. Director Mauro Bolognini has recreated a by-gone era with great skill as he did in LA VIACCIA and METELLO. The film is shot in a misty humid color style that seems as though the camera needed to blow its nose. The use of actual Bologna and Venice locales adds to the film's authenticity. Ennio Morricone's score is appropriately melancholy. This is truly an engrossing drama.
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