I Vitelloni

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"We are the hollow men in this last of meeting places we grope together and avoid speech. Gathered on this beach of the torrid river."
  • NR
  • 1953
  • 1 hr 43 min
  • 7.8  (19,698)
  • 87

I Vitelloni is a 1953 Italian film directed by Federico Fellini which tells the stories of five young men in Rimini, a small coastal town in Italy. The movie follows the ups and downs of their lives and their collective inability to take responsibility or mature beyond their youth. The film was a critical and commercial success at the time of its release and has since gone on to become a classic of Italian cinema.

The five main characters all come from different backgrounds, but they share a common bond of their aimlessness and their lack of direction. Fausto (Franco Fabrizi) is a handsome womanizer who works in his father's bar but dreams of becoming a writer. Leopoldo (Leopoldo Trieste) is a failed playwright who spends his days drinking and complaining about the injustice of his situation. Moraldo (Franco Interlenghi) is the most level-headed of the group, working in a pharmacy and dreaming of leaving Rimini for a more exciting life. Riccardo (Riccardo Fellini) is a vain and self-absorbed actor who spends his days preening and posing for the camera. Alberto (Alberto Sordi) is the overweight and good-natured joker of the group, who is constantly playing practical jokes on his friends.

The film consists of a series of vignettes that show the various misadventures and miscalculations of the young men. They hang out at the beach, go to parties, and generally avoid any responsibilities. Fausto carries on a secret affair with a married woman, while Riccardo dates a string of beautiful but shallow women. Leopoldo argues with his mother and faces rejection from a local theater troupe. The group goes on a road trip, has a run-in with the police, and watches their friend Sergio (Leonardo Bragaglia) get married at a lavish wedding.

Throughout the film, Moraldo serves as the conscience of the group, trying to shake his friends out of their complacency and get them to take control of their lives. He has a crush on Sandra (Liliana Gerace), a shy and studious young woman who works in the pharmacy with him, and he dreams of one day escaping Rimini with her. Moraldo is the only character who seems to have a real sense of direction, and he serves as a foil to his more aimless friends.

The movie's title, I Vitelloni, translates to "The Young Oxen," and this alludes to the young men's stubbornness and unwillingness to change. They are all content to live in the moment and avoid making any meaningful decisions about their future. The film is a bittersweet tragedy, as we watch these vibrant young men waste their potential and fail to grow up.

The movie is shot in black and white, and Fellini's cinematography captures the sleepy beauty of Rimini and the surrounding countryside. The music, composed by Nino Rota, is both playful and melancholy, perfectly capturing the mood of the film. The screenplay, written by Federico Fellini and Ennio Flaiano, is a masterful exploration of youth and disillusionment, and it manages to be both funny and poignant at the same time.

I Vitelloni was a groundbreaking film at the time of its release, and it has since become a classic of Italian cinema. It paved the way for later Fellini films such as La Dolce Vita and 8 1/2, and it established Fellini as one of the greatest directors of his generation. The movie's themes of youthful ennui and wasted potential still resonate with audiences today, and it remains a powerful and moving portrait of a generation lost.

I Vitelloni is a 1953 comedy with a runtime of 1 hour and 43 minutes. It has received mostly positive reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 7.8 and a MetaScore of 87.

I Vitelloni
Where to Watch I Vitelloni
I Vitelloni is available to watch free on Plex. It's also available to stream, download and buy on demand at Amazon Prime, Max, Apple TV and Amazon. Some platforms allow you to rent I Vitelloni for a limited time or purchase the movie and download it to your device.
  • Release Date
  • MPAA Rating
  • Runtime
    1 hr 43 min
  • Language
  • IMDB Rating
    7.8  (19,698)
  • Metascore