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Rocco and his Brothers (1961) [Masters of Cinema] (Blu-ray)
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Savagery and sacrifice; love and lust, portrayed with a rare realism and frankness that you will never forget in Visconti's masterpiece!
From Luchino Visconti - the master director of such classics as La terra trema, Bellissima, and The Leopard - comes this epic study of family, sex, and betrayal. Alongside Fellini's La dolce vita and Antonioni's L'avventura, Visconti's Rocco and His Brothers ushered Italian cinema into a new era, one unafraid to confront head-on the hypocrisies of the ruling class, the squalor in urban living, and the collision between generations.
When a tight-knit family moves from Italy's rural south to metropolitan Milan, the new possibilities - and threats - present in their fresh surroundings have alarming, unforeseen consequences. Operatically weaving the five brothers' stories across a vast canvas, with an extraordinary cast including Alain Delon, Annie Girardot and Claudia Cardinale, Rocco and His Brothers stands as one of the most majestic and influential works of its era.
The Masters of Cinema Series is proud to present one of Visconti's most revered films for the first time in the world on Blu-ray.
- Gorgeous high-definition 1080p presentation from a new 4k restoration
- Optional English subtitles
- Two audio choices; the original Italian, and the French dub
- Les coulisses du tournage, a 2003 French documentary about the film
- A 1999 interview with Visconti's cinematographer Giuseppe Rotunno
- An interview with actress Claudia Cardinale
- A 2002 interview with actress Annie Girardot
- Luchino Visconti, an hour-long documentary about the life and work of Visconti
- Two vintage newsreels
- Original Italian trailer
- PLUS: A 40-PAGE BOOKLET featuring writing by Guido Aristarco, an essay written by the director in 1960, a vintage interview with Visconti and rare archival imagery.
''Raw,energetic masterpiece bristling with well-measured tension ★★★★★'' - Empire
''Neo-realism at its grittiest vies with grandstanding melodrama... backed by Nini Rota's heartfelt score ★★★★'' - Total Film
''Luchino Visconti was a man of many tempers, styles and beliefs, and you can see them all, fighting for space, on the epic canvas of his masterpiece'' - Roger Ebert
''A disturbing, despairing epic of the soul'' - Los Angeles Times
''Luchino Visconti's masterpiece can be experienced once again in all its fearsome beauty and power'' - Martin Scorsese
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Top Customer Reviews
Visconti made this film in order to try and address the issue of the divide between the south and the north of Italy, but also (as the title hints) as a tribute to one of his favourite authors the German novelist Thomas Mann - the aforementioned title of "Rocco and his Brothers" echoes Mann's monumental biblical novel "Joseph and his Brothers", and the story of the decline of a family has some links to Mann's most famous novel "Buddenbrooks".
The film relates the fortunes of a family (a widowed mother and her 5 sons) who move from rural southern Italy to Milan and try to establish a new life in a strange city. Although it runs for nearly three hours (many of Visconti's movies are quite lengthy, and this is not the longest), the film enthrals because of great direction and performances (especially from Alain Delon in an early role as the eponymous brother, and Annie Girardot as the prostitute Nadia who has such a devasting effect on the family). Although no longer capable of provoking the scandal that accompanied its first release, there are several enormously powerful scenes here that have lost none of their shocking impact.Read more ›
The film has two main themes: the influx of southern Italians to the north of the country, a controversial and emotive subject at the time, and betrayal.
Visconti wrote the film for Delon whose performance shows him to be much more than the pretty boy dismissed by critics and detractors. It does have to be said however that his extraordinary beauty is at times a distraction. This is one of the few films where Delon's role, as the eponymous Rocco, matches his angelic looks. Rocco is saintly, almost to the point of stretching credulity at one major point in the film.
This was an important film at the time and it has aged well. Much of the story is relevant today. All the actors play their parts convincingly. This two disc set has many worthwile extras including interviews with Annie Girardot and Claudia Cardinale, a 60 minute documentary on the life and work of Visconti and newsreel footage of film festivals of the period, and it comes with an informative booklet too.
I have seen this film retailing on the High Street at £21 and £26. The Amazon price is terrific value. Don't hesitate, buy this copy now!
A end of unsolved questions and reflection time makes this film a classic.
However, it is, in so many other ways, a wonderful film. Visconti was a master. Just a shame about some of the narrative strands in this one...
It is one of those riveting epic Italian films of family, ostensibly focussing on each of the five brothers in turn: Vicenzo (the fiancé who made the trip in advance and intends to marry Ginetta, played by a young Claudia Cardinale); Simone (the boxer, an unredeemable thief and murderer), Rocco (the soldier, a drifter through life, a dreamer and romantic); Ciro (the engineer, level-headed, hard-working, conforming readily to the ethical norms of their new home); and Luca (the youngest, the one who witnesses, the one who also represents the future - indeed, the film's final frame sees him running into the distance).
By trying to address each brother in turn, the film ensures it is something more than a family soap opera, but inevitably each brother's life affects those of the others, and so what we end up with is a more or less seamless mesh of family ups and downs. Fraternal loyalties are tested to extreme degrees in their new urban environment. The centre of the film revolves around the relationship between the proud and reckless Simone (Renato Salvatore) and the selfless and pretty Rocco (Alain Delon) and their tussle over the flirtatious Nadia (Annie Girardot). The tussle leads to a tragic denouement played out in a brutally operatic style at the film's end. This scene is the only real element of melodrama in what is mostly a film of realism.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
The definitive version available for this classic. I highly recommend this Blu-ray edition.Published 25 days ago by S. I. H.
Excellent film, a must see. Beautifully restored and a good Blu-ray package. I enjoyed watching all the extras.Published 4 months ago by mysterioustraveller
A masterpiece of Movies and Cinema . The oustanding performance of ALAiN DELON turned him into a MEGASTAR ALAiN DELON - the master of Movies and Cinema . Read morePublished 5 months ago by Gentille Adrian Buzatu
This latest restoration, seen here on blu-ray, is a glory and a revelation,with a clarity of image heretofore unimaginable. Truly like seeing it for the first time. Grazie. hfsPublished 5 months ago by hfs
Aged badly and now a chore to watch. End of the line for the post war neo-realists. Watch the bicycle thieves instead.Published 8 months ago by MV