On New Year's Eve, an insecure, struggling actress (Anna Magnani) has nothing to do. When a colleague invites her to a New Year's party, she jumps at the opportunity. Accidentally she runs ...
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On New Year's Eve, an insecure, struggling actress (Anna Magnani) has nothing to do. When a colleague invites her to a New Year's party, she jumps at the opportunity. Accidentally she runs into an old acting acquaintance (Toto), who is helping a professional pickpocket (Ben Gazzara) steal from people during the hustle-bustle of New Year's Eve festivities. During the course of the evening, they have numerous crazy, humorous adventures all over Rome at different parties, restaurants, and even the Trevi fountain. Magnani's character (Tortorella) falls for Gazzara's character (Lello) without knowing what he's up to, while Toto tries to placate them both.Written by
The three thieves try to steal jewelry in a rich mansion with a lot of guests on the 31st December. They are found with the objects in the purse and sent away, thanks to the benevolence of the ambassador. Then they go to a church, but the are posters with "Mese di Giugno" (month of June) on the walls. See more »
I saw this film 40 years ago as "The Passionate Thief" and it still makes me laugh when I think about it, which is often. Anna Magnani's appallingly delusional "blonde" actress is unforgettable as she, with her old standby Toto, blunder their way through this pathetic misadventure worthy of a New Year's Eve. Ben Gazzara's con man/thief is juicy and sexy enough to make any woman his accomplice, willing or accidental, and the tragic-comic tension between Ms. Magnani and the thief is pure comedy. This film really belongs in the category of Billy Wilder films and why it is not better known is beyond me. Given a choice, I would be hard pressed to decide whether The Passionate Thief or Die Fledermaus is my favorite New Year's party. I cannot recommend this film enough, especially to fans of Bunuel and Wilder.
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