An all around tragedy, from the poverty on the streets, to the adult criminals who take advantage of the children, to the adult jailers who care for not much else than maintaining their order and not being punished by their superiors, to the strife being in prison brings, until it comes full circle when you decide to further the momentum of the cycle.
A heartbreaking venture which called forward the neorealist film movement wherein De Sica became a celebrated figure. Shoeshine at once defines the genre while proffering De Sica with the tools and ideas to be reworked in his later neorealist masterpieces Bicycle Thieves and Umberto D, perhaps the two best examples of the specific post war movement.
89/100 - Excellent. (4.5)
I've just watched SHOESHINE tonight for the first time thanks to a British DVD which presents SCIUSCIA in a pristine copy. Post WWII in Italy seen through the eyes of children and teens who try to survive in a world of adults who don't see them anymore or, worst, use them. It reminded me at times of Truffaut's THE 400 BLOWS. Highly recommended.
De Sica's job in life was devastate hearts. Here we have another powerfull movie from Italian Neo realism, portraying a country destroyed by the war, where two kids have their lifes changed and being affected forever. The end is so painfull, cuts like knife.
Incredibly powerful. Not sure why this one hasn't gotten as much acclaim as Bicycle Thieves. Maybe Shoeshine doesn't get out on the street enough. De Sica sure knows how to get some great performances from children and young actors.