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Bread and Tulips is the quintessential story about a bored and unfulfilled Italian housewife. The film opens with a scene of the Greek Temple of Ceres. The guide makes an off-color comment about one of the emperor's commodes, and the film shows a middle-aged man making a wisecrack about the reference. The wife of this man also makes a sarcastic comment about her husband under her breath. Her name is Rosalba, and her marriage, while not in trouble, is not particularly satisfying either. The film shows them riding on the bus and then they stop to go into a store. Rosalba drops what appears to be her wedding ring into the commode and spends an amount of time attempting to retrieve it. After she comes returns, she realizes that the bus, with her husband and children, has left her behind.

She begins to hitchhike home, but the more she thinks about being left behind the more offended that she becomes. The worst part is the idea that her husband would want her to stay put when he is the one who left her there in the first place. Feeling undervalued and unappreciated, she decides on the spur of the moment to take a detour to Venice.

After her husband realizes she is gone, he hires a plumber to act as a private investigator in order to find her. He is a bumbling, comical man, and he eventually meets up with a woman named Grazia, who just happens to be Rosalba's neighbor back home. After this event he has a change of heart and calls Rosalba's husband to say he is not working for him anymore because he could not find her. As the film progresses, the viewer learns that the husband has had a mistress all along. Rosalba falls in love with Fernando, a maitre'd at a restaurant.

| 2001 | 1 hr 54 min | 7.3/10 | 68/100
Licia Maglietta, Bruno Ganz, Giuseppe Battiston, Antonio Catania
Silvio Soldini
Produced By
Daniele Maggioni

Also starring Licia Maglietta

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