The Children Are Watching Us

Watch The Children Are Watching Us

"A pulsating drama of childhood."
  • NR
  • 1944
  • 1 hr 25 min
  • 7.7  (3,023)

The Children Are Watching Us is a heartbreaking drama film directed by Vittorio De Sica and released in 1943. Set in fascist Italy, the movie tells the story of a young boy named Pricò (Luciano De Ambrosis) and his family, who are torn apart by infidelity, jealousy and tragic misunderstandings. Pricò is a charming five-year-old boy who lives with his loving parents, Andrea (Emilio Cigoli) and Nina (Isa Pola) and his baby brother. One day, Nina goes away on a trip, leaving Andrea alone with the children. Soon afterward, Andrea meets his former lover, Marta (Giovanna Cigoli), and they engage in a secret affair. Pricò, who has a deep connection with his father, slowly discovers the truth about the relationship and feels isolated, confused and betrayed.

As the situation worsens, Pricò's behavior becomes more erratic, and he struggles to understand the adults' world. Although he is just a child, he senses the impending doom and tries to alert his mother and his relatives of the affair. However, no one believes him, and he is constantly shut down, gaslit and ignored. He sees the world through the innocent eyes of a child and cannot comprehend the complex issues that his parents and Marta are entangled in.

The movie is a powerful meditation on the devastating effects of infidelity on a family, particularly on a child. It depicts the harm and trauma that can be inflicted on a child's psyche when exposed to adult betrayals and secrets that are beyond his capacity to comprehend. The movie's central theme is the intergenerational effect of the adults' actions on the children, who become passive recipients of the emotional turmoil caused by their parents.

The Children Are Watching Us is a movie of remarkable depth and sensitivity, particularly considering its time period. De Sica, who was a master of neorealism, depicts the emotional landscape of a child with unflinching realism and empathy. He creates a haunting portrait of a boy who is trying to protect his family from the painful truth, even though he knows that he cannot save them from their inevitable fate.

The performances in the movie are excellent, particularly by the young actor Luciano De Ambrosis, who portrays the character of Pricò with tremendous subtlety and authenticity. He is empathetic, endearing, and heartbreaking in equal measure, and his portrayal of a child's world view is nothing short of exceptional. Emilio Cigoli is also noteworthy, particularly in the scenes where he wrestles with his guilt and tries to reconnect with his son.

Overall, The Children Are Watching Us is a timeless masterpiece that explores the themes of betrayal, infidelity, and their psychological impact on children. It is a brave and compassionate movie that remains relevant to this day, and it is a testament to the power of cinema in conveying complex emotions with honesty and grace.

The Children Are Watching Us
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  • Release Date
  • MPAA Rating
  • Runtime
    1 hr 25 min
  • Language
  • IMDB Rating
    7.7  (3,023)