Una storia semplice (1991)

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Cast overview, first billed only:
Carmelo Franzò (as Gian Maria Volontè)
Ennio Fantastichini ...
Police Chief
Ricky Tognazzi ...
Brigadier Lepri
Massimo Dapporto ...
Massimo Ghini ...
Traveling Salesman
Carabinieri Colonel
Gianluca Favilla ...
Gianmarco Tognazzi ...
Roccella's son
Omero Antonutti ...
Father Cricco
Tony Sperandeo ...
Macha Méril ...
Roccella's mother
Giovanni Alamia
Laura Landolfi
Cathy Marchand


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Release Date:

12 September 1991 (Italy)  »

Also Known As:

A Simple Story  »

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Edited into Lo schermo a tre punte (1995) See more »

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User Reviews

Sicily in winter, the mafia in all seasons.
15 July 2008 | by (Argentina) – See all my reviews

It seems that I'm only watching old movies that nobody else will watch anymore. It's all right.

I'm watching old movies that I take from the Dante Alighieri School of Italian in Buenos Aires, mainly to refresh my Italian. Of course when they are good, it's an ideal combination.

In this particular case, I'm afraid we are a bit far from excellence. They based this film on the last Leonardo Sciascia tale about the Sicilian mafia, published a few days previous to his death. I think that what bothered me most was the editing and the music. The editing could have profited by eliminating from a few to several seconds on each scene --we won't enumerate them here!-- since many of them were quite awkward, (the mother and son scene at the commissary, for example).

The truly interesting message of this movie, is that justice exists only in those very old American films, where the police was so honest, the judges carved from a solid piece of granite and the research of the crime was conducted no matter what, masterfully, till the very rotund ending, where the bad guy goes to jail and the good guy comes out clean (because he is honest and a good person).

Blach and White, there were no gradations of grays when it came to Goodness and Evil. But not even American movies are made like that anymore. The world got wiser and sour since then.

And we know that in real life, we have mainly gradations of grays. Very seldom --if ever-- we find sheer black or luminous white. And this is exactly what this movie shows us. Nothing is what we thought it was going to be.

And the abysmal conclusion is that because there are so many prominent citizens involved in this (aparently) unresolved crime, the police decides --after finding the real murderer-- to drop the case branding it as "Accidental".

Beautiful the scene where one of the witnesses (suspected as involved in the crime) is finally set free from the police station and we see him living that town in his white Volvo, when in a flashback he associates a face he just saw leaving the police station in the company of one of the murderers in the incident witnessed by him, and in the middle of this empty road where he was traveling, he turns back to go and tell the police about this extremely important detail.

But the car --we see it from a bird's eye point of view-- vacillates after a few yards, maneuvers again and returns to the previous direction, when he was living town, and he disappears without looking back.

Obviously he had decided that it wasn't worth it --being a foreigner--, to get involved in something alien to his life.

Entertaining movie in a very muffled way.

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