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33 of 34 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A great neorealist set
I am guilty of being an admirer of Italian cinema in general and its neo-realist period in particular so I hope I do not sound too biased. This boxset offers 5 of the best neo-realist films ever: Vittorio de Sica's BICYCLE THIEF rated the best film ever made at a 1960 vote by film directors, actors and other members of the film community; Vittorio de Sica's MIRACLE IN...
Published on 19 Aug 2010 by Movie Fan from Portugal

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20 of 24 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars great films, poor boxset
Around 50% of the dialogue is not subtitled bizarrely, as though the translator could only speak a bit of Italian. This is very frustrating for me, since I'm writing an essay on the Bicycle Thieves, and need all possible detail. The films have skipped a couple of times too, but with no scratches on the disk. Basically the transfer onto dvd was a piss poor attempt.
Published on 12 Mar 2011 by Phil


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33 of 34 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A great neorealist set, 19 Aug 2010
This review is from: The Neo-Realist Collection [DVD] (DVD)
I am guilty of being an admirer of Italian cinema in general and its neo-realist period in particular so I hope I do not sound too biased. This boxset offers 5 of the best neo-realist films ever: Vittorio de Sica's BICYCLE THIEF rated the best film ever made at a 1960 vote by film directors, actors and other members of the film community; Vittorio de Sica's MIRACLE IN MILAN, a "surreal" example of neo-realism; de Sica's UMBERTO D, his own favourite film with the central character reportedly based on his father, a truly universal message about the pitfalls and oblivion of old age; Rosselini's ROME, OPEN CITY, a sublime film dealing with the end of the German presence in Italy at the end o World War II; and Fellini's best film, I VITELLONI, perhaps my favourite in the whole lot. At this price you could not do much better...
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars 5 Great Films on 4 Great DVDs..., 2 April 2011
This review is from: The Neo-Realist Collection [DVD] (DVD)
Having been fortunate enough to find this when the asking price had temporarily dropped below 10, I was very pleased to acquire a boxset containing five films, each of which has received significant amounts of praise from one quarter or another.

Vittorio De Sica dominates this set, with three of the five films and, indeed, it is a necessity that any prospective cinephile should become acquainted with his work. Bicycle Thieves and Umberto D. are perhaps most representative of the Italian neorealistic movement with their use of non-professional actors, natural lighting and stories based very heavily on real life in 1940s/50s Italy. Both are top class. The third of his films here, Miracle in Milan, is somewhat different as it meshes harsh reality with fantastic elements, to create what has been called a "neorealist fable". Personally, I enjoyed it less, but it did receive the Grand Prix at Cannes in its day and is probably worth watching for the iconic final scene alone. De Sica was a master and these are three of his most feted works, the two major others being Shoeshine (available from Masters of Cinema) and the Garden of the Finzi-Continis (yet to find a good copy).

Fellini's I Vitelloni was cited by Kubrick as one of his favourite films and it is easy to see why. A relatively simple tale of the dynamics of a group of friends growing up in post-war Italy, with various trials and tribulations, is nonetheless enthralling and a good introduction to the director, whose later films (8 1/2, La Dolce Vita etc.) can be less accessible.

Finally, there is the ultimate classical neorealist film - Rome, Open City. This is to Italian neorealism what Breathless is to the French new-wave or Nosferatu is to German expressionism. It is, as such, a shame that the greatness of this movie is obscured by a poor DVD transfer (the American, censored version) with subtitles definitely lacking, making the film more difficult to follow than it should be. I found this despite having a basic knowledge of Italian which allowed me to understand some of what the subtitles were omitting... Despite these flaws, it is still clearly a well-made film and the great scenes in particular do not lose much of their power.

All things considered, I would recommend this as these are five worthwhile cinematic experiences which are a rarity in that they are both critically acclaimed, well-made films and very easy to watch. A good introduction to a very important phase of film history, particularly whilst so many of the Rosselini films (Paisan, Europa '51 etc.) are so scarcely/expensively available in the UK.
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20 of 24 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars great films, poor boxset, 12 Mar 2011
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This review is from: The Neo-Realist Collection [DVD] (DVD)
Around 50% of the dialogue is not subtitled bizarrely, as though the translator could only speak a bit of Italian. This is very frustrating for me, since I'm writing an essay on the Bicycle Thieves, and need all possible detail. The films have skipped a couple of times too, but with no scratches on the disk. Basically the transfer onto dvd was a piss poor attempt.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars bellissimo, 26 April 2013
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This review is from: The Neo-Realist Collection [DVD] (DVD)
films how they should be made. the son in bicycle thieves is one of the best characters in film. I would recommend to anyone who's taste for cinema has gone stale on a diet of insipid rom coms or action movies aimed at the lowest common denominator.
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26 of 32 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Masterpieces that every cinema fan should own!, 14 Jan 2007
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G. Anderson (UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Neo-Realist Collection [DVD] (DVD)
If you have the remotest interest in powerful character driven cinema and a mindset which is open to other cultures, in this boxset you will find five of the most enthralling masterpieces of Italian neo-realist cinema.

In some, nothing much happens, but this is exactly the point! The directors of the neo realist movement captured on film the essence of the raw emotions and challenges of everyday life in post-war Italy, often using non professional actors which resulted in some of the most mesmerising images and stories in cinema.

Do yourself a favour and buy this.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Great for presents or just for you self, 1 Feb 2014
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This review is from: The Neo-Realist Collection [DVD] (DVD)
I bought it for a friend's bday. It arrived quickly and I was satisfied. It comes highly recommended by me.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful collection, 1 Jan 2014
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This review is from: The Neo-Realist Collection [DVD] (DVD)
As a film lecturer I hadn't seen or used these films for a long time. I am struck by how the stories are so moving and so intimate. The use of 'real people' as actors added to the social messages of film makers like De Sica. The films are enjoyable as classics in their own right and now specialist knowledge is required to enjoy them. Umberto D and Bicycle Thieves will move you to tears - wonderful film making at a difficult time in Italy's history.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great Collection, 13 Jan 2013
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Mr. B. ASHTON - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Neo-Realist Collection [DVD] (DVD)
A brilliant collection of films at a great price, some real gems and no filler. Couldn't ask for more. Recommended.
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10 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Classics, 30 Nov 2007
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M. R. Tomlinson (UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Neo-Realist Collection [DVD] (DVD)
All five of these films are classics of post-war Italian cinema. These are must-see films for any students of neo-realism. Shot on low budgets often with amateur actors, they convey the harsh realities of Italy after World War II. These films brim with humanity and even today cannot fail to move the audience.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Neo-Realist Collection, 11 Feb 2013
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This review is from: The Neo-Realist Collection [DVD] (DVD)
This collection is delightful - and supplemented with informative documentaries. I can't even say which film I liked most; all of them were true gems!
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The Neo-Realist Collection [DVD]
The Neo-Realist Collection [DVD] by Federico Fellini (DVD - 2006)
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