- Language: English, Italian
- Subtitles: English
- Region: Region 1 (US and Canada DVD formats.)
- Aspect Ratio: 4:3 - 1.33:1
- Number of discs: 1
- Classification: Unrated (US MPAA rating. See details.)
- Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars See all reviews (92 customer reviews)
- ASIN: 6305081034
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 206,735 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)
Bicycle Thief [DVD]  [US Import]
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asian text on sleeve
Vittorio De Sica's remarkable 1947 drama of desperation and survival in Italy's devastating post-war depression earned a special Oscar for its affecting power. Shot in the streets and alleys of Rome, De Sica uses a real-life environment to frame his moving drama of a desperate father whose new job delivering cinema posters is threatened when a street thief steals his bicycle. Too poor to buy another, he and his son take to the streets in an impossible search for his bike. Cast with non-professional actors and filled with the real street life of Rome, this landmark film helped define the Italian neorealist approach with its mix of real life details, poetic imagery, and warm sentimentality. De Sica uses the wandering pair to witness the lives of everyday folks, but ultimately he paints a quiet, poignant portrait of father and son, played by Lamberto Maggiorani and Enzo Staiola, whose understated performances carry the heart of the film. De Sica and scenarist Cesare Zavattini also collaborated on Shoeshine, Miracle in Milan, and Umberto D, all classics in the neorealist vein, but none of which approach the simple poetry and quiet power achieved in The Bicycle Thieves. --Sean Axmaker --This text refers to the Blu-ray edition.See all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
this was the film that really defined the neo-realism movement. it was the first time that a style or movement could be clearly seen. the film seems so simple, and on one level it is, but at the same time it has underlying motives - humanism vs. fascism for example. but don't let this seemingly heavy subject put you off. the film is so good you can just WATCH the film and not SEE if you want.
on one level this film aches with a beauty and heartbreack rarely captured in any text. i rate this higher than any other neo-realism films - rome,open city, paisa or ossessione - and that is because it is so watchable.
the film offers up so many questions-about morality, responsibility, masculinity-and does it under the guise of reality-and reality is what is captured on screen in all its beauty and ugliness.
please watch this film!
However, when it comes to subtitles, I'm beginning to understand Americans aversion to them. This dvd's English subtitles are of the worst possibly quality, missing more than half of the lines and offering the translation in completely wrong timing - something I have never found in subtitles of my own language.
If it wasn't for the fact that, as a Portuguese speaker, I can understand Italian well enough to compensate for the missing subtitles, I wouldn't even have finished watching it.
This is not the first time I've encountered bad English subtitles. However, these were so terrible they were either made by a child or someone extremely lazy.
Also, on the back it reads "Too poor to by another, he and his son...". Noticed the typo? That's on the backcover.
edit: Another problem I just noticed: it says running time 143min, but the movie is close to 90 minutes long.
The image quality is fine, but make no mistake, this is a terrible edition. If you can, buy a different version.
For the Ricci family things are looking up when Antonio is offered a job, the employment is conditional however and requires him to have his own bicycle. Unable to turn down employment he and his wife pawn their bed linen to raise enough money to get back the bike they had previously pawned. The couple are gloriously optimistic and their faces reflect their newfound happiness. Ricci cycles to work a contented man, but on his first day his bicycle is stolen. The police are unable to help, finding a bicycle in Rome would use all their resources so a dejected Ricci roams the streets of the city to try and find his wheels.
With his son Bruno, the two realise the futility of their mission, Rome is a big place. "Bicycle Thieves" is much more than a film about a bike theft - it's a father and son journey and explores the efforts a man will make to salvage his dignity, unable to provide for his family, he doesn't want to appear a failure. If the film has any message it's a simple one; life isn't fair. The poverty gap is cleverly depicted when the two eat a simple meal of mozzarella on bread with water, and Antonio is forced to watch his own son occasionally glimpse over at the table next door where a wealthy family eat a feast.
The film is relatively uneventful but brilliant in its simplicity. As Antonio and his boy spend time together their relationship seems to become one of father and son to that of two men observing the world for what it is.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Like a fool I didn't check it out - it's an original Italian DVD - without English subtitles and my Italian is non-existent. My Fault!Published 1 month ago by patrick devlin
For want of a bicycle, a job was lost. For want of a job, a lifeline was lost. For want of a lifeline, a family unit sank into despair. Read morePublished 3 months ago by big bob
I thought the film was overrated, boring with little story and extremely depressing. I felt like jumping under a bus after watching it.Published 3 months ago by Cyclist1
I'd heard great things about this film and I wasn't to be disappointed. A true bit of art, which works on many levels. Multiple viewing will, I'm sure, follow'.Published 7 months ago by Jon Warden
A sad story of past times In Italy good recommendation for a continental moviePublished 10 months ago by Laurence Braun
Ultimately sad but atmospheric period piece full of gritty detail. Largely amateur cast. You can almost taste the grinding poverty, desperation, hope and sense of community in... Read morePublished 11 months ago by Ian
An objective view is difficult of this much-mythologised film, but I loved it anyway.Published 11 months ago by B & S de Belgique