12 October 2007 | primodanielelori
Anna Magnani as a rebel with a cause
A stunning surprise. Luigi Zampa, the director, is not one of the names you usually hear when "the best Italian cinema" is discussed and yet, look at this movie. From the opening sequence in which Angelina and her husband spend a sleepless night trying to find a way to feed their children, the film grabs you with a truth that's part neo-realistic part pure poetry. Anna Magnani is sensational, allowing her character to wear all those elements that made Magnani famous - feisty, truthful and strong - with a soft, loving side that makes the character one of the most endearing of her illustrious career. As a trivia note, the young romantic lead is played by Franco Zeffirelli.How strange that now, 60 years later, nobody in Italy could make a film with the artistry and the humanity of this one. Framed by a poet told by someone who truly understood the language of cinema. Shame on me, a Roman from Rome who hadn't seen this film. I bet we're legions. I urge you, rent it, buy it, watch it.