A woman from the lower class desperately tries to get her daughter into the movies.A woman from the lower class desperately tries to get her daughter into the movies.A woman from the lower class desperately tries to get her daughter into the movies.
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Film director Blasetti is looking for a little girl for his new movie. Along with other mothers, Maddelena takes her daughter to Cinecittà, hoping she'll be selected and become a star. She is ready to sacrifice anything for little Maria, even if her husband would prefer they save their little money for the rent instead of paying teachers, hairdressers, or bribes for her illusions. —Yepok
Very beautiful; Magnani at her best
If you see only one film by Anna Magnani, see BELLISSIMA. The is "La Magnani" at her comic best. Get the video with English subtitles because even if your italian is good, the verbal onslaught is thick and fast. Preferably one should see this film on the big screen to get the full impact of Magnani's performance. She plays a stage mother who is trying to get her young, tiny little girl into the movies. Magnani's warmth, wit, slyness and sheer volcanic beauty leap from the screen. I am amazed that Hollywood has not re-made this film. It would be the perfect vehicle for Barbra Streisand or Bette Midler and would assure them of an Oscar nomination. Unlike her English language roles, such as "The Rose Tattoo" or "The Secret of Santa Vittoria", in BELLISSIMA Magnani acts in her native italian voice. It makes all the difference in the world. When she acted in English, she was stilted and restrained; the language barrier, although she made super-human, heroic efforts to master English, is nonetheless felt. But in her native tongue, Magnani lets loose with a bravura performance. I defy anyone not to fall in love with her after watching BELLISSIMA.
- May 27, 2000
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