on 21 October 2006
A film about love, and, er, anarchy. Funny, horrifying, moving, passionate, committed, acid, cynical...Magnificently acted, with a beautiful music score. A love story, a peasant and a whore. The tyranny of fascism and the desperation of the poor. At once a romance, a comedy and a study of political injustice. This is a mix found in many of Wertmuller's films. The result is confusion, an evocation of feeling that insidiously questions itself as you watch.
And it's accurate. Whores did fall in love in the Italy of the 1930s, and soldiers did beat dissidents to death, and human beings haven't changed at all in the meantime. As a species we have a horrifying, lovable capacity to love and be cruel at the same time. Lina Wertmuller has caught this in her film with devastating results. La Tripolena believes that love is more important than justice or freedom. And if we are capable of loving while we carry out our fight for freedom and justice we are enlightened indeed. But emotions are powerful; feeling, we often lose our sense of perspective. The results are unforgettably shown in this film.