Data: 1965


Composed of 32 vignettes depicting life in modern-day Italy, the film is divided into five chapters: "Habits and Customs," "Work," "Women," "Citizens--the State--and Church," and "The Family." Linked together by scenes of four Italian laborers flying to Stockholm to look for work are incidents such as the following: Tourists in Florence are able to locate places of historical interest only by asking other tourists for directions; bored sophisticates in Rome amuse themselves by dining in the Trastevere section where they are insulted and rudely served; a young husband-to-be is relieved to learn that even though his fiancée has been involved in theft, kidnaping, and homicide, she is still a virgin; a Roman lover goes to great lengths to seduce a married woman and then finds it impossible to get rid of her; bridal gowns in a shop window are admired by a weeping nun; Virginia, a defenseless woman, describes to Renato, her former boyfriend, how she suffered at the hands of her recently deceased patron; the teenaged daughter of an ill-tempered janitor attempts to pose as a socialite; Diana, the beautiful owner of a Ferrari, allows herself to be picked up by Orlando, who is interested only in her car; impoverished villagers stare at posters urging them to "Help India"; the regally appointed offices of a financial magnate belong to a monsignor of the Catholic Church; Lamporecchi, a Roman citizen in need of an identification card, shuttles from office to office only to learn that the computers indicate that he does not exist; a young wife finds her husband in bed with another woman, and after listening to his explanations she apologizes for misunderstanding the situation; Anna, an Italian mother, shepherds her three small children, her shiftless husband, and her aged mother-in-law across three lanes of traffic to buy some ice cream and then discovers that the store is back on the other side of the highway.

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