4 user 18 critic

La grande strada azzurra (1957)

Not Rated | | Drama, Romance | 22 November 1957 (Italy)
Squarciò, a fisherman, lives with his family on a small island off the Dalmatian coast of Italy. Like his fellow villagers, Squarciò struggles against harsh living conditions, a scarcity of... See full summary »


Franco Solinas (novel), Ennio De Concini (screenplay) | 2 more credits »


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Yves Montand ... Giovanni Squarciò
Alida Valli ... Rosetta, la moglie
Francisco Rabal ... Salvatore
Umberto Spadaro Umberto Spadaro ... Gaspare Puggioni, 1st Coast Guard Officer
Peter Carsten ... Riva, 2nd Coast Guard Officer
Federica Ranchi Federica Ranchi ... Diana Squarciò, la figlia
Terence Hill ... Renato (as Mario Girotti)
Ronaldo Bonacchi Ronaldo Bonacchi ... Bore Squarciò, il figlio (as Ronaldino Bonacchi)
Giancarlo Soblone Giancarlo Soblone ... Antonio 'Tonino' Squarciò, il figlio
Josip Batistic Josip Batistic
Stane Potokar Stane Potokar
Angelo Zanolli Angelo Zanolli
Giorgio Kuru Giorgio Kuru
Janez Vrhovec Janez Vrhovec
Milutin Jasnic Milutin Jasnic


Squarciò, a fisherman, lives with his family on a small island off the Dalmatian coast of Italy. Like his fellow villagers, Squarciò struggles against harsh living conditions, a scarcity of fish in nearby waters and exploitation by the local wholesaler. But while the other fishermen continue to use nets, he goes out to the open sea to fish illegally with bombs. But Squarciò borrows money, loses his boat, and in a moment of supreme desperation, has to bomb directly off-shore, causing the hatred and rejection of his fellow fishermen. Trying to save his family, Squarciò and his young sons sail their new boat out beyond the local waters and bomb-fish again. But this time, the sea exacts a terrible toll... Written by Dennis Doros & Amy Heller

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

boat | bomb | italy | island | fisherman | See All (24) »


Drama | Romance


Not Rated | See all certifications »




Release Date:

22 November 1957 (Italy) See more »

Also Known As:

The Wide Blue Road See more »


Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$6,741, 10 June 2001, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$6,741, 10 June 2001
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:



Color (Ferraniacolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.00 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Referenced in Cinemania (2002) See more »

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User Reviews

Like a prettier and more well-made version of La Terra Trema
1 October 2006 | by MartinHaferSee all my reviews

This film is highly reminiscent of another film, LA TERRA TREMA. Both might be considered Italian Neo-realist films, though LA GRAND STRADA AZZURA does feature a big-name actor in the lead (Yves Montand) and a big budget--somethings that a Neo-realist film cannot have to be technically this type of film. However, I am apparently one of the few reviewers on IMDb that really disliked LA TERRA TREMA--because the acting was so incredibly amateurish as well as the lousy camera-work. Instead, LA GRAND STRADA is beautifully filmed in color and Montand is the centerpiece around which all the non-professional actors are anchored.

The film itself is also a little more exciting because it deals not just with a family of fishermen like the other film, but a family that illegally uses homemade dynamite to fish!! And the negative impact on the fishing industry and the other fishermen makes for some great tension. While this certainly isn't a great film, it's a very, very good one and has an excellent ending to wrap it all together.

By the way, do not get the idea that I dislike Neo-realist films and prefer big-name actors and budgets. No, I actually love movies such as UMBERTO D, MIRACLE IN MILAN and THE CHILDREN ARE WATCHING US (all by Vittorio De Sica)--it's just that there are also a couple truly awful and amateurishly made Neo-realist films as well that I really hate--and apart from STOMBOLI, LA TERRA TREMA is probably the most boring and unwatchable Neo-realist film I have seen. You are MUCH better off just watching this film--it's very similar but interesting--and avoid LA TERRA TREMA unless you are a masochist and you actually like very slow and miserable films.

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