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Four generations of a family live crowded together in a cardboard shantytown shack in the squalor of inner-city Rome. They plan to murder each other with poisoned dinners, arson, etc. The household engages in various forms of sexual idiosyncrasies, land swindles, incest, drugs and adultery. Written by
Rick Fleming <email@example.com>
Nino Manfredi, only professional actor here, shines in this Ettore Scola movie as Giacinto Mazzarella, a former convict with a long series of crimes and a huge, quirky family. He's violent, vulgar, amoral; he lives surrounded by dirt, squalor and poverty. Yet, he's funny. This movie is too funny! Scola directs a group of actors headed by Manfredi, who shows off an irresistible accent, and by Maria Luisa Santella as Iside, Giacinto's mistress, a fat, sweet but silly woman with an "ancient name". But it isn't a carefree comedy: behind the quips and the jokes there's a grotesque depiction of a miserable reality not very far from San Pietro, the most important Catholic building in the world. Not a perfect film, but a very good one.
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