Hilarious early parts of the film give way to a surprisingly suspenseful ending. Not sure I can really think of a film offhand that also pulls this off, at least as masterfully. Sordi is one of the great underrated comedians of all time IMHO. A must see Italian gem of its time. 4.5 stars
The direction of our lives is influenced not only by our own choices, but by the choices others make for us. The genius of Lattuada's film is how deftly he weaves those two together into Nino's story. In this case, Nino's 'side gig' is a precursor to our current globalized era in which work is routinely outsourced halfway around the world. The film also revels in the culture clash between northern and southern Italy.
I thought that this would be a typical poorly filmed but amusing film. It is actually an engaging piece that seems predictable, yet the human story (Nino) is much more compelling than what we see on the surface. Yes, many aspects are predictable, but the story is well-paced and the ending is much better than I expected and not what I expected.
"...boisterous fun with crusty Sicilian stereotypes on that sun-baked island of strict moral codes and ancient family ties. Then -- as suddenly as a cloudburst appearing out of a clear blue sky -- it turns dark..." and that darkness is like a slap across the face, bringing tears to your eyes.
Great acting by Alberto Sordi. Italian actors are so emotional the way they act. Missing that in modern cinema. Anyway, my take on this movie, is that your ghosts from the past, almost always will shape your future. There's no running away from them... unfortunately
Avec un constant humour désabusé et caustique et une interprétation haut de gamme d'Alberto Sordi, étonnant dans sa verbeuse exubérance et sa conciliante faconde, cette oeuvre transalpine faussement débonnaire, inédite en salles dans l'Hexagone, dénonce, mine de rien, la profonde et permanente gangrène de la religion, de la politique et du monde des affaires contaminés par la tentaculaire mafia.www.cinefiches.com
Excellent picture from director Alberto Lattuada and star Alberto Sordi. Very black comedy that becomes more serious minded as it goes on. The fish out of water jokes and sicilian characteratures develop into a serious minded take on familial responsbilities both to one's immediate family (and their safety) and to "the family" culture in the sicilian towns. Wonderful pic that gets better with additional viewings.
Entertaining comedy from director Alberto Lattuada features a hilarious central performance from Alberto Sordi. Its biggest flaw is its leisurely pacing, it could have used a bit more energy at times - but the suspenseful final sequence is brilliantly conceived.