Showing posts with label il bidone. Show all posts
Showing posts with label il bidone. Show all posts

31 December 2013

Blu-Ray Review - Il Bidone (1955)

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Comedy, World Cinema, Drama
Eureka! Entertainment
BD Release Date:
30th December 2013(UK)
Federico Fellini
Broderick Crawford, Richard Basehart, Giulietta Masina
Buy: Il Bidone [Masters of Cinema] Dual Format [Blu-ray & DVD]

Il Bidone is one of Fellini’s early films and came out after the worldwide success of La Strada. It was a big flop in the film’s native Italy and abroad. It was made when Fellini for all purposes was still working in the school of Italian neo-realism. Fellini from the 60s onwards would be known for surrealist satires, which I prefer.

Il Bidone is about a group of small time swindlers (the title translated is The Swindlers) called Augusto (Broderick Crawford), Picasso (Richard Basehart), and Roberto (Franco Fabrizi) who prey on poor farmers and slum dwellers. The role of Augusto was originally intended for Humphey Bogart, which would have been interesting. Fellini always a mischievous director in the opening scene dresses up his swindlers as Catholic priest. They trick some poor farmers out of their money by in exchange for some bogus buried treasure.

The film has a great set piece in which the conmen pretend to be city officials. They go to a slum and pretend to be city officials and scam everyone by saying they will give them a council house if they put down a deposit. It’s perfect shows the lengths that the 3 conmen will go to get a quick buck.

The film isn’t Fellini at his finest see his masterful 8 ½ but it’s a interesting slice of neo-realism which a slight film noir edge. It was criticised by some for just being a crime film but it’s a scathing attack on the greed. It’s worth checking out and as usual Masters of Cinema has done a very nice package.


Ian Schultz