Bicycle Thieves is the 1948 Italian film directed by Vittorio De Sica. The Ricci’s are a working class family living in Rome. World War II has just ended, leaving Italy in ruins. The father, Antonio is unemployed, but soon gets a job putting up posters. He has to get his bicycle out of the pawn shop because the job requires one. Antonio starts the job without a hitch, but his bicycle is stolen. He files a report with the police, but they warn him that there’s not a lot they can do. He decides to take matters into his own hands and look for the bike himself. Will he get it back?
This is the quintessential Italian neo-realist film. The story is pretty good and plausibly realistic since many Italians were out of work after WWII. We never find out who stole the bicycle. Although the ending is sad, it is not bleak because Antonio can find another job and still has his job. It could have been worse, since he tried to steal a bike and was caught by the police. In fact, the heart of the movie is the close bond between Antonio and his son as they search for the bike together. Honolulu film fans should watch this movie.
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