Practising the world's oldest profession in the archaeological walk of Rome's Parco di Porta Capena, the trusting and stubbornly optimistic streetwalker, Cabiria, refuses to lose faith in love. After escaping death by the skin of her teeth, hurt, and momentarily disenchanted Cabiria continues to confront life with a mixture of naivety and arrogance, and one evening, she ventures into the elegant Via Veneto and gets picked up by the suave movie star, Alberto Lazzari. Now, once more, disappointment awaits, and as poor Cabiria preys to Virgin Mary for guidance and a blessing, the man of her prayers, Oscar D'Onofrio, barges into her life after a chance encounter at a vaudeville theatre. But do miracles happen?Written by
Nights of Cabiria has been available in videos in the original version. The Rialto Pictures 1998 version, released in theaters in 1998, restores a scene showing a mystery man with a sack delivering food and blankets to people sheltered in holes. The 1998 version restored picture and sound, has a new translation, and is available from The Criterion Collection (DVD) and Homevision Cinema (DVD). See more »
I almost turned this film off. I'm so glad I stayed with it. It's one of the best films I've seen. Cabiria, the street prostitute, is not sympathetic. She's rough, vulgar, not very attractive, a showoff, loud, proud, inelegant. I just didn't feel anything for her character at the beginning. But Fellini must have been reading my mind. He purposefully played it that way to draw the viewer in.
The streets of Rome are unforgiving and harsh for a prostitute. There are those who sleep in caves and in the archways. Cabiria braggingly says, "I've got my own house...here's one girl who's never slept under the arches. Well, maybe once. Twice maybe." By the end of the film I was completely hooked by her charm, desire, and hope. For hope is what keeps Cabiria going. A great film.
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