by guest writer
I Vitelloni (1953) marks probably the breakthrough from the Italian Neo-Realism to a new kind of Italian cinema led by Federico Fellini. The main focus of the film is on the lives of five old friends who grew up together. The life in the small town of Rimini after the war is tough, but nevertheless keeping an apparent calm that is to emphasize the figuratively speaking storm that will drive each of the five destinies on its own path. Fellini succeeds to treat the subject with a certain distant humour, keeping its sensitive part untouched. That is probably why the blend of melodrama and comedy is so subtle.
Moraldo Rubini, played by Franco Interlenghi, represents Fellini’s alter-ego in the movie, which gives I Vitelloni an even more personal flavour. Once Moraldo reaches out and breaks from the monotony, it provides the film with a rich and fulfilling taste. The movie became a symbol for the generation that emerged during the beginning of the 50’s, probably because of it honest depiction of the young. Its charm lies in the facts that it combines the director’s memories with a fantasy closed to dream like minute. The cinematography compliments I Vitelloni with its black and white view upon Rimini and its landscapes. It is set out to be the perfect background for the unfolding story.
photo: movie still I Vitelloni | credit: Cité Films, Peg-Films