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I Vitelloni (The Criterion Collection) (1956)

Alberto Sordi , Franco Fabrizi , Federico Fellini  |  Unrated |  DVD
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (34 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Alberto Sordi, Franco Fabrizi, Franco Interlenghi, Leopoldo Trieste, Riccardo Fellini
  • Directors: Federico Fellini
  • Writers: Federico Fellini, Ennio Flaiano, Tullio Pinelli
  • Producers: Enrico Sirianni, Issa Clubb, Jacques Bar, Kim Hendrickson
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Black & White, Full Screen, NTSC, Subtitled
  • Language: Italian (Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono)
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: Unrated
  • Studio: Criterion
  • DVD Release Date: August 24, 2004
  • Run Time: 107 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (34 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0002DB4YQ
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #77,589 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "I Vitelloni (The Criterion Collection)" on IMDb

Special Features

  • New digital transfer with restored image and sound plus new subtitle translation
  • Vitellonismo: an exclusive documentary on the making of the film
  • Collection of stills, posters, and memorabilia
  • Original Theatrical trailer and movie newsreels from the time of the film's release
  • New essay by Grammy Award-winning writer Tom Piazza

Editorial Reviews

Federico Fellini's breakthrough film, the 1953 I Vitelloni, is one of the cinema's seminal stories about slacker males, and a highly entertaining one at that. Following the unfortunate failure of his comedy The White Sheik, Fellini prepared to shoot La Strada (he would release that early masterpiece in 1954), but decided at the last minute to make an autobiographical feature about mischievous, drifting, 30-ish losers in a small, seaside town. I Vitelloni clicked with international audiences and remains an obvious influence on such later classics as Breaking Away and Diner. But there's nothing like Fellini's almost self-mocking fusion of gritty neo-realism with the audacious, illusionary style he would later be entirely linked. The ensemble comedy follows the ever-diminishing fortunes of five young men who can't define, let alone jump-start, their dreams, particularly the caddish Fausto (Franco Fabrizi), who thinks nothing of molesting the wife of his father-in-law's best friend. --Tom Keogh

Product Description

Five young men linger in post-adolescent limbo dreaming of adventure and escape from their small seacoast town. They while away their time spending the lira doled out by their indulgent families on drink, women, and nights at the local pool hall. Federico Fellini’s second solo directorial effort (originally released in the U.S. as The Young and the Passionate) is a semi-autobiographical masterpiece of sharply drawn character sketches: Skirt-chaser Fausto, forced to marry a girl he has impregnated; Alberto, the perpetual child; Leopoldo, a writer, thirsting for fame; and Moraldo, the only member of the group troubled by a moral conscience. An international success and recipient of an Academy Award® nomination for Best Original Screenplay, I Vitelloni compassionately details a year in the life of small-town layabouts struggling to find meaning in their lives.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
36 of 36 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Candid and Warm Cinematic Event... September 12, 2004
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
Trapped in a timeless sphere without pressure of accomplishment, maternal love nurses five men way past their adolescence in a small tourist town by the Adriatic Sea in post-war Italy. These five men drift around dreaming of an escape from the town, but a lack of motivation keeps them prisoners at the seaside location. The mutual motivations for the five men that keeps them adrift are women, wine, and the stories they tell each other. However, each character has his own motivating factor that drives him forward in daily life.

The group of the five men consists of Fausto (Franco Fabrizi), Alberto (Alberto Sordi), Leopoldo (Leopoldo Trieste), Riccardo (Riccardo Fellini), and Moraldo. The group's leader Fausto, a perpetual flirter, has gotten a young beautiful woman pregnant. Fausto's father insists that he do the right thing and marry the girl before she is disgraced in public. The lazy Alberto is the groups clown who is dependent on his mother whom he will never leave. Alberto frequently pleads for money from his sister as he is continuously broke. Eventually Alberto finds out that his sister has a married lover and it angers him. Leopold an aspiring writer and the intellectual of the group dreams of fame and success. The singer Riccardo follows the group on its nightly adventures. Moraldo is a philosophical moralist that wanders the streets at night deep in thought as he sees faults in the way they all live life. However, Moraldo has not yet found the courage to leave the small seaside town.

I Vitelloni is the second film that Fellini directed by himself which he also co-wrote with his talented brother, Riccardo Fellini.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars neorealism hits a comfortable stride December 18, 2004
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
A group of middle class "yoots" hang out together, bonded by common roots and experience, but also by the process of self-discovery as the onset of adulthood face them with the coming of responsibility and the isolation of individuality. The focus of this fracturing process falls on one guy who discovers that his girlfriend is pregnant. If the plot sounds familiar, well it's because coming of age is a universal experience that crosses generations and cultures, and rarely fails to to produce an intense sense of nostalgia.

What differentiates Fellini's film (beyond the fact that it pre-dates similar fair from the French New Wave, British 60's, Graffiti-Flatbush-Diner, etc. whose original accessibility make them more familiar) is simply the sheer talent of the story-teller. The man could present characters and situations that still move and enlighten us. His later, more famous epics of excess were well grounded in this same exquisite sense of humanity. This is the first excellent film by one of film's most excellent directors.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars First great Fellini film. November 19, 2004
I Vitelloni, released in 1953, is Federico Fellini's first commercially successful film and we are fortunate that the Criterion Collection decided to make it available on DVD in August of this year.

Moraldo, who looks to be in his mid-thirties, represents Fellini. Moraldo and four of his friends hang around a seaside town in northern Italy looking for anything interesting to do to distract them from the boredom of their wasted lives. The young men are Vitelloni, slang in Italian for loafers. All of the young men have dreams, but not much ambition. Only Moraldo will find the courage to break free of the paralysis that traps the young men in surroundings too comfortable to leave but with no sense of accomplishment or satisfaction.

Fellini gives us the story of each of the five men, but more attention is paid to Fausto, a womanizer who impregnates Moraldo's sister and then is forced to marry her. Marriage is hardly an inconvenience to Fausto, who immediately cheats on his wife every chance he gets. Moraldo knows that Fausto is unfaithful, but his allegiance to his friend is greater than to his sister. Like Fellini, Moraldo is a careful observer of his surroundings, but does not criticize or judge what he sees. He appears to be somewhat detached and thoughtful. He is a good friend to have if not a protective brother to his sister.

I Vitelloni is a slice of Italian life that resonates deeply with the viewer. Fellini organizes carefully each scene and then allows his actors the freedom to bring to life the characters they represent. His confidence in his actors is repaid by superb performances from each member of his cast. For the first time we see and experience his enormous talent as a director.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars One of Fellini's earliest films is one to be seen February 20, 2005
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
This review is for the Criterion Collection DVD edition of the film.

"I Vitelloni" is the 2nd film by Federico Fellini that he directed by himself. It's original name in the US release was, "The Young and the Passionate."

It follows the adventures of some young men in their costal town. Each of them is facing a dilemma and tries to cope with it. One has gotten his girlfriend pregnant and her father is demanding that he marries her. The others have situations of comparable difficulty,

The DVD has some nice special features also. In addition to the theatrical trailer, there is a photo gallery of lobby cards, posters and other stills. There is also a documentary on the film's production.

This release is quite good and based in part on Fellini's own childhood. It is a release Fellini fans are sure to appreciate.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Time to Grow Up
This film is an excellent portrayal of adolescents' right of passage into adulthood. The protagonists in the film are stuck in limbo between adulthood and adolescence. Read more
Published 7 months ago by Veddy
5.0 out of 5 stars The Real World of Fellini
This film delivered far more than I was expecting. This is the neo-realism side of Fellini prior to his transition into the more surrealistic fare that came later. Read more
Published 7 months ago by Arlee Bird
5.0 out of 5 stars Neo-Realistic Study of Futility
I watched I VITELLONI a few days before the beginning of the BBC Radio 4 celebration of British neo-realistic novels and plays such as THE LONELINESS OF THE LONG DISTANCE RUNNER... Read more
Published 11 months ago by Dr. Laurence Raw
5.0 out of 5 stars Great, down-to-earth Fellini
The impressive third film by Federico Fellini, I vitelloni, is one of his most accessible because it has less typical Fellini-esque qualities; even as an adoring Fellini fan, I... Read more
Published 12 months ago by SJreviewsEverything
5.0 out of 5 stars Boys will be boys...
Felini's films often carry with them this universally felt weight of humanity, as if you can feel the life lessons spilling from every frame due to the fact that you can ultimately... Read more
Published 14 months ago by Andrew Ellington
5.0 out of 5 stars I Vitelloni
"I Vitelloni" is a tragicomic look at the life of five young men in a small provincial town in Italy. Read more
Published 18 months ago by off the tropic
5.0 out of 5 stars As true about Italy today as 60 years ago.
When you consider what most other films of the time were like it is remarkable (though it must have been influenced by other neo-realists). Read more
Published 22 months ago by Paraducks
2.0 out of 5 stars Typical Fellini Vacuousness.
Viewed: 6/12
Rate: 3

6/12: Being lured to seeing I Vitelloni by the virtue of Alberto Sordi's magnificent performance in Mafioso but not at all enchanted by any of... Read more
Published on June 9, 2012 by Austin Somlo
3.0 out of 5 stars Good
I Vitelloni is not great cinema, but it is an important film in the Fellini canon, biographically, in its ability to be a Rosetta Stone to other key moments and images in later... Read more
Published on June 7, 2012 by Cosmoetica
5.0 out of 5 stars archetypal treatment of the Italian man
This film is a must-have for any fan of Fellini. His second film under his complete control, it was his first large success and established him as a European cultural force. Read more
Published on December 17, 2010 by Robert J. Crawford
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