La vita è bella
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FAQ for
Life Is Beautiful (1997) More at IMDbPro »La vita è bella (original title)

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For detailed information about the amounts and types of (a) sex and nudity, (b) violence and gore, (c) profanity, (d) alcohol, drugs, and smoking, and (e) frightening and intense scenes in this movie, consult the IMDb Parents Guide for this movie. The Parents Guide for La Vita Bella can be found here.

In an interview, Roberto Benigni said the riddle has no solution—that it was nonsensical to point up the ridiculousness of the situation. A possible answer does exist, and it's "a jew". The initial part of the riddle, in Italian, is Grasso grasso, brutto brutto / tutto giallo in verit: / se mi chiedi dove sono / ti rispondo "Qua qua qua". (Translation: Fat fat, ugly ugly / truly all yellow / If you ask me where I am / I answer "Quack quack quack".) The only answer Dr. Lessing proposed is "duck", but he knows it's wrong. There is a double meaning of the word "qua". "Qua!", in italian, is the cry of a duck, but it also means "here!". And the word "here" answers to the question contained in the previous verse. In English the riddle is meaningless, but in Italian it can be quite shocking, if one accepts the alternative explanation. To the eyes of a Nazi, the stereotype of a Jew is a fat, ugly person with a yellow skin.


Attention!! Is there an Italian who speaks German?

Listen! I say this only once. There's only one reason why you have been transported to this camp—to work!! Any attempt of sabotage will be punished immediately with death penalty. The executions will take place at the courtyard by shots in the back. You have the honour to work for our great German fatherland and participate in the construction of the greater German empire.

You should never forget 3 basic rules: 1. Don't try to flee! 2. Follow every command without asking! 3. Any attempt of a rebellion will be punished by hanging!

Is that clear!?! You should be happy to work here! Nothing will happen to you as long you obey the commands. Obedience is everything!!

And another thing At this whistle, everyone into the courtyard—fast!! Muster in two rows—Silence!!—every morning in roll-call.

One more thing ~ You will work over there and you will recognize the dimensions of this camp easily.


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