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on 17 June 2009
The film is a lively portrayal of life in the Italian countryside in the 1960's. Benassi family is a typical working class family with two sons and one daughter.While the father is a factory worker the family struggles to make ends meet. The small child gets kicked out of seminar school, while the big brother is fast organizing a union in the factory which he just entered. In the boiling cauldron of the 1960's political arena the youths get active in radical left and right wing organizations.

The growing up of a young man is showed beautifully in the film. His first days in school, his first love, first fight, friends and foes. The politically important place of the university in the 1960's left wing movement is mentioned in the film as well as far right followers of the Mussolini's fascist movement.Also mentioned in the film is the ordinary people's desire to have a decent life i.e living in better housing.

The ending of the film is somewhat saddening and wrong conclusions can be drawn from it: When you are young it is natural that you are engaged in politics but when you grow old and take responsibilities you should retire from radical views. You should not question the system and try to survive. Or else...you can be shot at by the police in the broad daylight, you can be jailed and your child can be a virtual orphan etc. I do not agree. These things can happen and did happen but they should not have happened to those who seek their rights for better days in the future.
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VINE VOICEon 11 October 2011
Luchetti's clever,funny movie mixes domestic and political confrontation in Italy's troubled 1960s and 70s, depicting the Romulus and Remus of politics of two brothers,in Latina,one of Mussilini's model towns.Handsome Manrico(Ricardo Scarmacio) pursuing communist beliefs,following his father into working in a factory,agitating against the oppression of the working class,later on the run.While youger,Accio(Elio Germano),going from a seminary,losing his beliefs,questioning his parents and brother,finding himself the black sheep of the family,playing second fiddle to his brother,with whom he has a love-hate relationship,attracted to his brother's girlfriend,without acting upon it.Instead he gets into his school studies,then fascism through his mentor,a steet trader,with whose wife he has an affair.He turns against fascism when they set light to his brother's car.The parents are shewn being ripped off by the authorities who having promised them a new council house ,fail to deliver,making Germano act on it.Germano brings charisma and brilliant acting to his role.
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 14 September 2012
Roman director Daniele Luchetti's 2007 film Mio Fratello è Figlio Unico (My Brother Is An Only Child) is a brilliantly evocative tale of a pair of brothers' search for identity (political, familial and sexual) in Italy's Lazio region in the early 1960s. Showcasing an exhilarating central performance (amongst a consistently strong cast) by leading Italian (and fellow Roman) actor Elio Germano as Accio Benassi, Luchetti's film combines an authentic look and feel (principally as a result of the excellent work of cinematographer Claudio Collepiccolo) with a highly evocative soundtrack (featuring a Morricone-esque score by Franco Piersanti, plus Italian songs from the era) to create a compelling and poignant film.

Accio's uncertainties around his future life trajectory are initially manifested during his period at a Catholic seminary, during which he questions his own emergent sexuality and politics. His latent rebelliousness is further fostered by his feelings of parental rejection, and the leftist political path chosen by brother Manrico and sister Violetta (a budding orchestral cellist) - respectively played in outstanding performances by Riccardo Scamarcio and Alba Rohrwacher. His association with fascist market trader Mario Nastri (played by TV's Inspector Montalbano, Luca Zingaretti) leads him to join the extremist party, thereby pitching him directly against his brother. These early sections of the film are, for me, particularly strong - indeed, Luchetti cast a younger, but still outstanding actor (Vittorio Emanuele Propizio) in Accio's early scenes and the transition between the two actors is (remarkably) totally seamless. Germano as the older Accio is superb throughout, but, particularly during the scenes with Francesca, Manrico's girlfriend and fellow Communist party worker, as Accio struggles to come to terms with the conflict between his adopted politics and romantic desires.

As Accio becomes increasingly militant in his political activities, Luchetti includes a number of standout scenes of friction between the brothers, before Accio begins to realise that his fraternal loyalty actually means more to him than his chosen political path. A particularly powerful scene features fascist party members (now, sans Accio) storming a Communist party-organised concert featuring Beethoven's 9th Symphony (amusingly with Schiller's Ode To Joy reworded to list the names of notable left-wing figures - Mao, Marx, Lenin, etc).

For me, Luchetti manages to steer the film just about clear of any feelings of over-sentimentality and in the process delivers a powerful depiction of Italian politics in a film which sits alongside the likes of Bertolucci's films The Conformist (the outstanding film on this subject) and Novecento, and, more recently, Paolo Sorrentino's Il Divo. The ending of Luchetti's film, where the Benassi family is able to enjoy some relief from their tragic situation by finally achieving their goal of moving into a new home, is particularly poignant.

A must-see film, therefore, in which Elio Germano demonstrates that (along with France's Romain Duris) he is one of the most outstanding European actors of the last 10 or so years.
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on 21 February 2015
Arrived quickly, it is a very good film that gives you an insight of Italy in the 70s 80s, and this is quite accurate, we grew up strongly taking side and becoming comunists or fascists some turned the other side later... some like me have come to the conclusion that we were manipulated and cheated by both sides which are actually very similar with regards to their manifesto as both are coming from the same root: Socialism. Back in the days it did really matter which side you are on and you would also follow a certain dress style, a certain music all under a political key.
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on 16 February 2009
Casting its spread over a slice of Italian history, it takes the weight of political ideas that dominated Italy in the 60s and 70s, brings them to head, and subtly layers it with the story of a family, where the lightness of being contrasts the turns their lives are taking in the politics driving them.

It also stands as a brilliant metaphor for how ideologies give the common man the pass by, and become an end to themselves.

Beautifully shot, and some fantastic acting perhaps make this the harbinger of the much touted italian renaissance that was heralded by Il Divo and Gomorrah.
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on 20 November 2011
This certainly took one back to the turbulent era of European youth in violent revolt. However I either found the characters totally unbelievable or so dislikeable that this picture never really grabbed me.
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on 12 April 2014
What a great film,just my type of film with comedy and drama in equal measures
There is nice scenery and the setting in the 1960s is really authentic with plenty fiat 500s around haha
Really quickly delivered in perfect condition,thanks
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on 17 December 2010
When I ordered this I was expecting a good Italian film - however it was better than expected. I will definitely watch this again and probably quite a few times.

Gripping storyline - brilliant!
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on 16 March 2015
amazing movie, delivered v efficiently
nothing more to say
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on 8 February 2015
Very, Very Good film.
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