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Rocco and his brothers [Masters of Cinema] [1960] [DVD]

4.7 out of 5 stars 34 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Actors: Alain Delon, Annie Girardot, Renato Salvatori, Claudia Cardinale, Katina Paxinou
  • Directors: Luchino Visconti
  • Format: PAL
  • Language: Italian
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9 - 1.77:1
  • Number of discs: 2
  • Classification: 15
  • Studio: Eureka Entertainment Ltd
  • DVD Release Date: 25 Feb. 2008
  • Run Time: 170 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (34 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0010NWANG
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 18,874 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Product Description

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 [Rocco e i suoi fratelli] 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. A tight-knit family moves from Italy's rural south to metropolitan Milan. The shock of the new is violent and immediate. A mother meddles. A whore beguiles. Brother faces brother. Blood-ties come undone. We pity beatific Rocco (played by the immortal Alain Delon in one of his greatest roles) and Nadia the harlot (Annie Girardot, capricious and scintillating) the modern condition has shattered their lives. An acknowledged influence on Coppola's The Godfather series (Nino Rota's exquisite Rocco score for Visconti led to working on The Godfather), Scorsese's Raging Bull, and many others, Rocco and His Brothers is a cinematic shock that erupts on the fault-line of emotion. The Masters of Cinema Series is proud to present one of Visconti's most revered films winner of the FIPRESCI Prize and the Special Prize at the Venice Film Festival in 1960 newly restored to its original Italian-language three-hour form. SPECIAL FEATURES: 2 x disc edition containing a new anamorphic restoration of the film in its fully uncut original 3-hour Italian release version - New and improved English subtitles - Three hours of extras, including newsreels from 1960; lengthy interviews with cinematographer Giuseppe Rotunno, and stars of the film Annie Girardot and Claudia Cardinale; the original Italian trailer; and two documentaries - TF1's Les Coulisses du tournage, and RAI's hour-long Luchino Visconti - 40-page booklet featuring archival imagery, articles by Luchino Visconti (The Miracle That Gave Man Crumbs) and respected Italian film critic Guido Aristarco (The Earth Still Trembles), and a rare interview with Visconti (Questions for the Author) translated into English for the first time.

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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Format: DVD
Luchino Visconti is one of the great Italian directors whose career spanned everything from arguably the first neo-realist film ("Ossessione" made in the early 1940's) to his later more elaborate works (such as his great adaptation of Lampedusa's "The Leopard" and the extraordinary 4-hour "Ludwig" about the mad, misunderstood last King of Bavaria).

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.
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
There are several versions of this film currently available; look no further, this is the one to buy. Restored here to it's orginal anamorphic ratio, this print offers excellent picture and sound quality. This release also offers the optional French language soundtrack where Alain Delon and Annie Girardot voice their own lines. The original soundtrack has them both overdubbed by Italian actors.
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!
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Format: DVD
42 years later the quality of the Maestro can be seen in this film. Many people forget that Alain Delon was a HUGE star at the time (1960) and it shows. The story of these set of poor brothers and an intelligent camera - in more cases better than Vittorio da Sica - shows the powerty and hopes of the Post-war Italy. The most powerfull scene is when the mock rape occurs.
A end of unsolved questions and reflection time makes this film a classic.
Recommended highly!
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Visconti's 1960 film is an epic 170-minute-long contemporary portrayal of a family of five brothers moving with their mother to Milan from the rural south of Italy. Indeed, the opening scene sees the family arrive at Milan's railway station as part of that strong but intermittent migration of Italians to the industrial north in search of jobs and a better style of living.

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.
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