A demon bestows on a self-righteous working photographer's camera the power to smite from the Earth "evil-doers". Naturally, the indignant photographer turns his new weapon on, one by one, ...
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Irene Wagner, the wife of prominent scientist Albert Wagner, finds herself blackmailed about her affair by her lover's jealous ex-girlfriend. The plot, an experiment in causing fear, drives her into a rage.
A barber, murderer because of jealousy, spends twenty years in jail. He cannot, however adjust himself to a changed world and to the hypocracy of his own relatives and decides to return ... See full summary »
Paola, a Milan call girl, returns home to her village in an attempt to go straight. Rejected by her father, blackmailed by a former lover, and lusted after by her brother-in-law, she turns to her beloved sister for support.
A demon bestows on a self-righteous working photographer's camera the power to smite from the Earth "evil-doers". Naturally, the indignant photographer turns his new weapon on, one by one, his entire village, beginning with the wealthy or illustrious. Soon, the poor he is so supposedly so enamored of become his victims too, so rife with impatience and contempt is he, that the slightest flaw is cause for smiting. Inevitably, he embarks on a task to destroy everyone.Written by
Rossellini had a wry sense of humor that showed up particularly in L'AMORE and his life of Francis of Assisi. Unfortunately for him, film making is a commercial art, and when people want to see a film by Roberto Rossellini, they want a drama. So this comedy, which owes a lot to E.T.A. Hoffman and Ernst Lubitsch (the preface even borrows from Lubitsch' DIE PUPPE) confounded the audiences. They expected a serious, small scale tragedy, and so didn't laugh. They stayed away and the film vanished for almost half a century. If you wanted a black comedy, you went to see a Billy Wilder film. Rossellini went back to doing what his audiences expected of him.
It's a pity. This is not a ground-breaking film for Rossellini, but it is a beautifully photographed and well-acted comedy with some wonderful pick-up shots.
If you see this movie, I suggest that you go in without any expectation of seeing a Rossellini film. Just give it the chance that you would give a film by some one you've never heard of before. On those terms, I expect you'll enjoy it a lot.
Aren't those the terms we should offer every movie?
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