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Sacco & Vanzetti (1971) ( Sacco e Vanzetti ) ( Sacco and Vanzetti ) (Blu-Ray)

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Italy released, Blu-Ray/Region A/B/C DVD: LANGUAGES: English ( Dolby Digital 2.0 ), English ( Dolby Linear PCM ), Italian ( Dolby Digital 2.0 ), Italian ( Dolby Linear PCM ), WIDESCREEN (1.85:1), SPECIAL FEATURES: Black & White, Cast/Crew Interview(s), Interactive Menu, Remastered, Scene Access, Trailer(s), SYNOPSIS: Sacco e Vanzetti is an Italian docudrama, made in 1971. It was written and directed by Giuliano Montaldo. The film presents a dramatization of the events surrounding the trial of Nicola Sacco and Bartolomeo Vanzetti. SCREENED/AWARDED AT: Cannes Film Festival, ...Sacco & Vanzetti (1971) ( Sacco e Vanzetti ) ( Sacco and Vanzetti ) (Blu-Ray)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 7 reviews
16 of 18 people found the following review helpful
Scandalized and offended 11 Aug 2005
By M. Sommacal - Published on
It is so dramatically painful to read the reviews written by people from USA. It is literally incredible to see how big is the amount of idiot annotations about the weakness of the plot, how tall is the mountain of stupid comments about the director choice of making a documentary movie without any focalization on the private lives of the two main characters (???), how deep is the sea of useless hypothesis about the real development of facts. (Is it necessary to remember that the plot had not been taken from a novel?). This kind of discoveries make me actually convinced that the amount of ignorance is also huge, even if I am really surprised at least three or four people decided to see such film. This movie tells something about the recent hystory of USA: the truth of the facts can be checked in any one of the various American sites dedicated to the S&V vicissitude (...).
The Montaldo's hystorical reconstruction is almost perfect: the movie was even usefull to arrive to the pubblic worldwide excuses pronounced by governor M. Dukakis in 1977. The "interpretation" of the two actors is simply superbe. I suggest to not-italian-speaking audience to watch this movie in original language (italian) with subtitles.
I was expecting to find reviews from people who didn't know anything about S&V, surprised by the described events, available to criticize their own legal system and seriously upset for the "byproducts" - it's better to say - the effect of the American democracy... I am scandalized and offended by the ignorance of people who don't know anything about S&V and the only thing they can report in a review is some cinematographic comment. It is time to diffuse this movie, or the story told in it, more than it has been done since today. Don't you think?
11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
Turn about is fair play 20 Sep 2000
By Charles S. Tashiro - Published on
SACCO AND VANZETTI is not a terribly good movie, but it provides an interesting object lesson for American viewers. Although Hollywood has never had any compunction about turning the whole world's history into a highly Americanized struggle between good and evil, foreign films about America's past are pretty rare. If for no other reason than to see how another society views us, films like S&V are worth watching. The fact that the film dramatizes one of our less enlightened moments makes it that much more interesting.
I don't know enough about the Sacco and Vanzetti trial to assess the film's treatment of it, but the filmmakers certainly make no effort to conceal their prejudices. Given when it was made (1971), at the height of Radical Chic, it is hardly surprising that they indict the system that condemned the two Italian-American anarchists. Both are portrayed as helpless innocents. Riccardo Cucciolla's Sacco particularly exudes the saintly aura of all New Left victims. The director, Guiliano Montaldo, is no Pontecorvo or Bertolucci or Rosi. He doesn't have the gift of making leftist politics ravishingly beautiful, but he's a competent hypester who knows how to keep things jumping. He's helped considerably by Gian Maria Volonte's powerful presence as Vanzetti. (Volonte is probably best known to American audiences for his villainous performances in the first two Leone/Eastwood spaghetti westerns, first as Ramón, Eastwood's chief antagonist in FISTFUL OF DOLLARS, then as Indio, the psychopathic bank robber in FOR A FEW DOLLARS MORE. He was also the lead in Elio Petri's INVESTIGATION OF A CITIZEN ABOVE SUSPICION.)
I don't know where S&V was shot. At a guess, probably Italy and England. With one or two exceptions, there isn't a location in it that feels remotely like Massachusetts, but that's what makes the film fascinating. It may be wildly inaccurate--but what does that say about American movies set in other countries? If we assume that the people who made this are serious, talented individuals (and why doubt it?), then we have to conclude that the distortions we pick up in an American subject merely reflect similar distortions Hollywood imposes on the rest of the world. Or, to put it differently, there is no reason to believe that Italians have a monopoly on short-sighted, provincial visions of other countries. Remember that the next time you watch an American movie about World War II and all the Germans speak English with German accents.
10 of 13 people found the following review helpful
A GOOD REMINDER 18 April 2002
By Ron Myers - Published on
Anyone with a true interest in what makes America tick should have more than just a passing awareness of the Nicola Sacco and Bartolomeo Vanzetti case. Edmund Wilson was quite accurate when he said in 1928 that the case "raised almost every fundamental question of our political and social system." And this movie is a good place to start picking up that knowledge. And the more informed may welcome the chance to see the famous events played out.
Here is the skeleton of the story, all taking place a few miles south of Boston: As a result of some bad luck, the two Italian anarchists are picked up, May 5, 1920, for questioning about one of their comrades, Mike Boda. Boda is a suspect in a double murder and robbery at South Braintree on April 15, 1920 and an attempted robbery at Bridgewater on December 24, 1919. Upon their arrest, Sacco and Vanzetti lie to the police and generally act guilty, thereby presenting themselves as suspects. Both are tried and convicted of the capital crime in the summer of 1921. World-wide protests gradually build, engineered at first by defense attorney Fred H. Moore and later by the Communists, until the marches and embassy attacks reach a crescendo with the tragic execution of two on August 23, 1927.
I believe this movie is too close to a documentary to be compelling drama and too one-sided and with a few too many errors to be a satisfying documentary. After all, we know at the outset the two will end up in the chair, so why the many minutes of courtroom action? It seems as if it is to discredit Moore, for he is shown antagonizing Judge Thayer over and over. Some of this did occur early in the actual trial and Thayer did hate Moore, but Moore soon turned over most of the examining to his co-counsel. Also, the movie shows several intemperate outbursts by Moore. They never happened but again serve to make him the patsy and to blame for the conviction. This isue with Moore has been a long standing party line. The truth is Sacco and Vanzetti were convicted ninety percent because the jury and especially the judge had their minds made up before the trial, and ten percent because the attorneys did not have the time or money early on to mount a really good defense.
I believe a better treatment would be to present the tragic case through the eyes of one of the minor characters, such as Sacco's wife Rosina, and so dig more into the personal lives of the players. The story needs the John Sayles touch. By the way, Rosina is shown as sympathetic to Moore, which could not be further from the truth.
Since actual transcripts are used for some dialogue, it is surprising how many errors of fact creep in for no good reason. The moviemakers seem just too intent upon propaganda. For example, there were two men on a motorcycle with S & V the night they were arrested, not three. They were Boda and Orciani. And they did not see Mrs Johnson on the telephone at her neighbor's; they only saw the telephone wires. These boo-boos do not serve any purpose. But one that does is the oft-repeated falsehood about Vanzetti's speech at his sentencing - "good shoemaker and poor fish peddler, etc." The truth is easily found in the literature.
The movie is quite effective in showing the horrors of capital punishment, though not as good as THE MONSTERS BALL.
Personally, I believe Sacco and Vanzetti were both innocent, and there is still a movie to be made to dramatize that fact and more closely to relate their tragedy to the current day's injustices, using only the truth.
Five Stars 23 Sep 2014
By Cristobal R. Garcia - Published on
Verified Purchase
Excellent performance but no subtitles
3 of 5 people found the following review helpful
VHS & DVD 1 Nov 2003
By A Customer - Published on
why cannot I find Sacco & Vanzetti in DVD format?
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