Claudia Cardinale, Jean-Paul Belmondo, Pietro Germi, Romolo Valli,
A disgraced young peasant turns his back on his rural farm—and an inheritance struggle between his old-fashioned family—for the love of a city prostitute in Mauro Bolognini’s tale of fin-de-siècle Florence. Jean-Paul Belmondo stars as the headstrong fool who knows that “inside, I am made of glass,” while Claudia Cardinale astounds as the prostitute, at times spiteful, desolate, carnal, nihilistic, and embittered, physically close, eternally distant. Like Bolognini’s other remarkable portraits of dying world orders, La viaccia inhabits a realm of fog, rain, and perpetual sadness, forever trapped in twilight. Cardinale and Bolognini’s collaborations were some of her favorites, and she considered Bolognini “a great director.”
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