Turin at the end of the fifties: two brothers have emigrated there from Sicily and the older works very hard to let the younger study and free himself from poverty through culture. The boy ... See full summary »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Giovanni
Francesco Giuffrida ...
Pietro
...
Pelaia
Calogero Caruana ...
Amico di Giovanni
Roberto Marzo ...
Amico di Giovanni
Davide Negro ...
Amico di Giovanni
Giorgio Pittau ...
Amico di Giovanni
Pasqualino Vona ...
Amico di Giovanni
Giuseppe Zarbano ...
Amico di Giovanni
Giuliano Spadaro ...
Padre della famiglia foggiana
Patrizia Marino ...
Madre foggiana
Giuseppe Sangari ...
Figlio
Francesca Monchiero ...
Figlia
Giorgia Scuderi ...
Assuntina
Salvatore Refano ...
Il vecchio siciliano
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Storyline

Turin at the end of the fifties: two brothers have emigrated there from Sicily and the older works very hard to let the younger study and free himself from poverty through culture. The boy however is not keen on school and would like to begin to work. When after some time he gets his degree however things take a violent and dramatic turn...... Written by Salvatore santangelo <pappagone2@libero.it>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

school | teacher | student | turin | sicily | See All (41) »

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

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Details

Country:

Language:

| |

Release Date:

2 October 1998 (Italy)  »

Also Known As:

The Way We Laughed  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$10,210 (USA) (23 November 2001)

Gross:

$44,286 (USA) (22 March 2002)
 »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Despite winning the top prize at the Venice Film Festival, Gianni Amelio still had to wait over three years before he saw his film released in the US. See more »

Quotes

Giovanni: You think your children are your own, then they learn to walk and they leave you. Know what they say back home? "Raise hogs, 'cause then you can eat them"
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Connections

References Rocco and His Brothers (1960) See more »

Soundtracks

La Mer
Music by Charles Trenet and Albert Lasry
Lyrics by Charles Trenet
Performed by Charles Trenet
Courtesy of Ed. Suvini Zerboni SpA
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User Reviews

 
an undeserving Golden Lion winner for Amelio
1 October 2015 | by (Cairo, Egypt) – See all my reviews

A tower of strength in the contemporary Italian terrain, Gianni Amelio's Venice Golden Lion winner THE WAY WE LAUGHED (my second entry after TKEY KEYS TO THE HOUSE 2004, 7/10), his sixth feature, is an emotion-charged story at the end of 50s, Giovanni (Lo Verso), an illiterate Sicilian young man, arrives in Torin to reunite with his young brother Pietro (Giuffrida), who is studying in high school.

Captioned the chapters by years and key words, the film infallibly circles around the two brothers, about their incompatible interrelation, which can be approximately summed up as follows, Giovanni unyieldingly insists that Pietro should finish his study and become a teacher, to fulfil a dream he is unable to pursue, as if this means the whole world to him, while Pietro, under such pressure to excel in the class, has to live in the fear that he might fail to live up to his dear brother's expectation, which establishes a deep discord between them. Life rarely goes according to one's wishful blueprint, however Amelio's meticulous endeavour, sometimes perilously close to mushy and over-indulgent, is to testify that blood is thicker than water, no matter what, even you have to murder a person, there is a silver lining awaits you.

Attentively restoring a retro setting of a period ripe with absolute poverty and blatant opportunism, Amelio opts for an alternative to green-light the success of the uneducated- but-determined money-grabber other than the younger-but-intellectual generation, eventually it is the latter's voluntary sacrifice saves the former from going down to the prison, so that the former can secure his hectoring business and start a genuine Italian family, with a sincere guilt compelling him to make up for the latter, but in the coda, after a heavy-handed device to sabotage a formal farewell ceremony, it leaves us wonder, how the two brothers have changed internally during the time-span, the same four-elephants-in-a- fiat joke caps the film, yet, they have become more distant from each other both physically and mentally.

Enrico Lo Verso, the leading actor of Amelio's more well-received works (THE STOLEN CHILDREN 1992 and LAMERICA 1994), greatly elicits Giovanni's devoted affection towards his beloved brother, addresses the most cringe-worthy dialogue (in Sicilian dialect, sounds like an utterly different language from Italian) with unaffected candour. Giuffrida, the young actor, was only 17 during the filming, is a few notches below by comparison, his Pietro is less sympathetic and his emotional spectrum is more intangible to pin down.

Many a time, the chapter-to-chapter cohesion fails to be fluent, viewers are prone to feel disconnected and confused about the happenings, for example, Giovanni's intentional tantrum in Pietro's school is introduced abruptly since Amelio coyly refuses to lay bare what has happened to Pietro, similarly, from his disappearance to a miraculous triumph aided by a private teacher, Pietro's transformation is bluntly conjured up without any weight. For what it's worth, THE WAY WE LAUGHED feels a tad undeserving of its garland, nostalgic, mawkish and a run-of-the-mill drama falls flat on its face.


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