The Bicycle Thief (1948)

This Italian post-war neo-realist film, directed by Vittorio De Sica, is about a man who has his bicycle stolen and then must find it in order to continue working. Antonio Ricci is a man desperate for a job and he is fortunate enough to get an opportunity. However, he needs a bike and he sold his trying to provide for his family. He gets enough money to buy it back and he starts his days work pasting posters up in Rome. While his back is turned his bicycle is stolen and the culprit gets away. Because it is his livelihood Antonio desperately searches first with his friends and then with his son Bruno. After much looking he believes he has found the thief but with no proof the boy gets off. As the day ends Antonio chooses the one option left with no avail. This film is wonderfully simple and beautifully realistic. You feel deeply for this man who is by no means perfect, in fact he has many faults. But he is simply human. In a sense we are left with a cliffhanger ending that leaves us anxious for him.

5/5 Stars

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