Shot on location with a cast of nonprofessional actors, Vittorio De Sica’s neorealist masterpiece follows Umberto D., an elderly pensioner, as he struggles to make ends meet during Italy’s postwar economic boom. Alone except for his dog, Flike, Umberto strives to maintain his dignity while trying to survive in a city where traditional human kindness seems to have lost out to the forces of modernization. Umberto’s simple quest to fulfill the most fundamental human needs—food, shelter, companionship—is one of the most heartbreaking stories ever filmed and an essential classic of world cinema. —The Criterion Collection
Few European film-makers combined artistic ambitions with a genuine populist spirit in the manner of Vittorio De Sica. In his prolific career, the actor-director made many films on social subjects which nonetheless engaged a mass audience. A Neapolitan by birth, De Sica came from humble roots, working as a theatre actor in the early 1920s. His stage success led De Sica to films where he proved to be a popular actor, mounting more than thirty film credits before his directorial debut with Rosa Scarlatte (which he co-directed with Giuseppe Amato). Even after his success as a director, De Sica was a much sought after performer; appearing in such classics as Max Ophüls’ Madame de… and Roberto Rossellini’s Il Generale della Rovere.
De Sica’s fourth outing as a director was his first collaboration with screenwriter and film theorist Cesare Zavattini. The Children Are Watching Us anticipated neorealism in its detached focus on a young boy’s growing isolation from his mother. De Sica’s… read more
I was amazed at how simple and heartbreaking this story was, moving me close to tears by the end. Vittorio De Sica is truly one of the masters of the cinema, and it is a shame his career was so short.
Worth watching, but...I don't know. Perhaps I'm a horrible person, but I felt no empathy for the character. The first two thirds of the film kinda left me apathetic, I didn't really care for the style of the film or Umberto. Then the park sequence happened. I was on the verge of tears, all I needed was the slightest tap. A noise, an expression, anything at all. But it finished on a happy note...not what I wanted.
Existe aqui um aviso importante. Vamos ser velhos, vai haver pouco quem nos compreenda e vamos sentir-nos excluídos. A parte em que o homem contempla o suícidio, a parte em que o cão abandona o dono, e uma data de coisas que mostram como é lixado que a dignidade de uma pessoa dependa tanto de ter ou nao dinheiro, fazem disto um filme a rever num futuro próximo. props à keps, que me disse p'ra ver o filme.
As a film about a man and his dog, this could be the best ever made. It never really finds its balance between pathos and comedy, and maybe it doesn’t need to? The use of non-actors seems to result… read review
Umberto Domenico Ferrari is a pathetic man. People just don’t like him. They avoid him. They try and screw him over. Maybe its him. He tells the one person who is good to him – his landlady’s maid… read review
So I pop in the Criterion Collection DVD and people are saying how it’s so fucking touching and sad, and how it’s one of the best Italian Neorealism movies ever created. Well…..let’s see!
Okay… read review