Watch The Wide Blue Road
- 1 hr 38 min
The Wide Blue Road is a 1957 drama film directed by Gillo Pontecorvo, starring Yves Montand, Alida Valli, and Francisco Rabal. The story revolves around a group of fishermen in a small village in Southern Italy who struggle to make a living in the face of a hostile environment and changing economic conditions. The film opens with a panoramic view of the sea and the rugged coastline, accompanied by a haunting musical score. We then see two fishermen, SquarciÃ² (Yves Montand) and his young nephew, Cicillo (Renato Salvatori), setting out in their boat to catch fish. The scene is beautifully shot, with the shimmering blue sea and the mountains in the background. SquarciÃ² is an experienced and tough fisherman who is deeply attached to his way of life, passed down from generation to generation. He is also a bit of a loner, living with his sister, but keeping to himself most of the time. Cicillo, on the other hand, is impressionable and dreams of a better future, one that would allow him to escape the poverty of his village. While SquarciÃ² and Cicillo are at sea, we see another fisherman, Pasquale (Francisco Rabal), struggling to make ends meet. Pasquale is deeply in debt and is desperate to catch enough fish to pay off his loans. He is also a bit of a loner, but for different reasons than SquarciÃ². As the story unfolds, we see the fishermen facing a number of challenges. Firstly, there is the sea itself, which is both beautiful and deadly. The fishermen have to navigate treacherous weather conditions and constantly adapt to the changing currents and tides. At times, they are perilously close to disaster, as when SquarciÃ²'s boat is damaged in a sudden storm. Secondly, there is competition from larger fishing companies, which threaten to put the small-scale fishermen out of business. These companies use industrial techniques and modern technology, which are more efficient but also destructive to the environment. SquarciÃ² and the other fishermen feel that their way of life is being threatened, but they don't know how to fight back. Finally, there is the issue of personal relationships. SquarciÃ² becomes involved with a beautiful woman, Antonia (Alida Valli), who is married to Pasquale. Antonia is unhappy with Pasquale but feels trapped in her marriage, so she turns to SquarciÃ² for comfort. This creates tension between SquarciÃ² and Pasquale, who are already in conflict over fishing grounds. One of the strengths of The Wide Blue Road is its attention to detail. The film immerses the viewer in the sights, sounds, and smells of the fishing village. We see the fishermen repairing their nets, mending their boats, and preparing their catch. We also see the women of the village, preparing meals, washing clothes, and caring for their families. The sense of community is palpable, and we get a real sense of the rhythms of daily life. The performances in the film are excellent, particularly Yves Montand as SquarciÃ². Montand brings depth and nuance to his character, who is both tough and vulnerable. We see him struggling with his own feelings of loss and regret, as well as his fierce determination to hold onto his way of life. Alida Valli is also strong as Antonia, conveying a sense of yearning and sadness. The cinematography is another highlight of the film. The Wide Blue Road was shot on location in Southern Italy, and the landscapes are stunning. The sea and the mountains are both majestic and intimidating, and the film captures their beauty and danger. The use of color is also striking, with the blue of the sea and the green of the mountains contrasting with the beige and brown of the village. Overall, The Wide Blue Road is a powerful and poignant film. It is a tribute to a way of life that is disappearing, as well as a warning about the consequences of environmental degradation and economic inequality. The film reminds us of the importance of community, tradition, and respect for the natural world. It is a timeless work of art that resonates with audiences today as much as it did over six decades ago.