7.4/10
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29 user 12 critic

Sunflower (1970)

I girasoli (original title)
An Italian woman conducts a desperate search for her husband, a soldier considered missing in action in Russia - like fifty thousand others during WWII.

Director:

Vittorio De Sica

Writers:

Tonino Guerra (story and screenplay) (as Antonio Guerra), Cesare Zavattini (story and screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Sophia Loren ... Giovanna
Marcello Mastroianni ... Antonio
Lyudmila Saveleva ... Mascia (as Ljudmila Saveljeva)
Galina Andreeva Galina Andreeva ... Valentina Ivanovna - the Soviet official
Anna Carena Anna Carena ... La madre di Antonio
Nadya Serednichenko Nadya Serednichenko ... La contadina russa (as Nadja Cerednicenko)
Germano Longo Germano Longo ... Ettore
Glauco Onorato Glauco Onorato ... Il reduce
Silvano Tranquilli ... L'operaio italiano
Marisa Traversi Marisa Traversi ... La donna alla stazione
Gunars Cilinskis ... Il funzionario russo (as Gunnar Zilinskij)
Giorgio Basso Giorgio Basso
Gianni Bortolotti Gianni Bortolotti
Umberto Di Grazia Umberto Di Grazia
Giuliano Girardi Giuliano Girardi
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Storyline

At the end of World War II, Giovanna, a war bride living near Milan refuses to accept that her husband, Antonio, missing on the Russian front, is dead. There's a flashback to their brief courtship near her hometown of Naples, his 12-day leave to marry her, ruses to keep from deployment, and the ultimate farewell. Some years after the war, still with no word from Antonio, Giovanna goes to Russia to find him, starting in the town near the winter battle when he disappeared. Armed with his photograph, what will she find? Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

A love story that spans two tempestuous decades in a motion picture of extraordinary power and enchantment! See more »

Genres:

Drama | War

Certificate:

G | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Italy | France | Soviet Union | USA

Language:

Italian | English | Russian

Release Date:

24 September 1970 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Sunflower See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (cut)

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

According to the 'Bloomsbury Foreign Film Guide', this was the first Italian film to be filmed mostly in Poltava, Ukraine. See more »

Goofs

Mascia tells Giovanna that when she found Antonio, he was hurt so badly that he had forgotten everything, including his own name. If that's true, then how did Mascia know his name was Antonio? See more »

Connections

Referenced in American Sexual Revolution (1971) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Beautifully hypocrite
22 August 2008 | by Mihnea_aka_PitbullSee all my reviews

A credible melodrama, but a totally ridiculous story. However, we should understand it - the movie's pro-soviet propagandistic stance is explicit. Fact is that it's literally IMPOSSIBLE for any missing-in-action Italian (or German, if we come at that) soldier, to have been cutely integrated in the Russian society. The N.K.V.D. was everywhere, and any such foreigner would have been found in a matter of weeks (months, at most), and treated like a spy. The Georgian Butcher was reserving the same fate even to the Russian soldiers who fell prisoners to the enemy: his paranoia dictating that the only explanation for having survived was defection, they were considered by default traitors and sent to the Gulag. So, our poor Mastroianni here, far of happily living ever after with Savelieva, would have been deported to Vorkuta or Ekibastuz, as a spy, for 10 years (or, rather, 25 - these being the standard imprisoning terms). After being released (in case he survived the abuses of the extermination camps), he would have been forced to live in exile (forced domicile), still in some village of Siberia or the Central Asia deserts. No way in hell for him even to travel in some other Russian township, close by - while the idea of coming back to Italy for a visit is as ludicrous as sending him to Mars.

But, well, Guerra wrote the script before Solzhenitsyn's "Gulag Archipelago" was published, so he can be excused for being so ignorant about the Russian realities.


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