Umberto D surprised me.

I am really surprised by how Umberto D. has grown on me. When I first read that we were going to watch the film I asked from family and friends if they knew of it. The only one who did was my step mother and from what she could remember of it, I did not think I would enjoy it.

But I was very surprised. I really did enjoy it. I find it ironic how a film that has a much more simple plot then most blockbusters of modern day could be as gripping and interesting as it was. I think I was really surprised by how much I cared about what happened to Umberto and little Flike. I think that the fact that the film focused on Umberto and his dog instead of the much broader situation going on in Italy at the time really allowed it to take on a personal feeling and allowed the viewer to really connect with the film and the characters….

…Which is something that really does not happen to much these days in film. Over and over again we are presented with unbelievable characters going through unbelievable circumstances concluding in an unbelievable ending. Umberto D was a real treat for me in that it really served to show me that films could be much more than the blockbusters of which I have grown tired of.

I was also interested by the detail in which the film gave to sound. For some reason when I thought of “Realism,” I thought of low production value, but I was wrong. Of course the film didn’t make use of all kinds of things that our technology today gives us access to, but I was surprised by how well it did what it presented.

In addition, I really enjoyed how De Sica portrayed the differences in class and how the different classes interact with one another. But because we were viewing the film through the eyes of Umberto we see his landlady as the antagonist of the film. I find it interesting how that if the film was shot from her perspective Umberto would be just another old penniless (or really lira-less) man for which no one cares.

Oh and lastly, cute cute dog. 🙂

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  1. Hello Moshe

    I agree with you in the moment you say that De Sica concentrates more in the human being than in the whole Italian neorealism. We as viewers obtained some glance of the whole crisis, but don’t care much about the whole country, but of Umberto, so I think the director does it to have a deep connection.

    When you comment on the connection that doesn’t happen nowadays, I strongly believe that for some reason documentaries were created. I wonder when they started to take off and if the changes in making connection to the character has something to do with producing documentaries.

    yes about the sound was very impressive how the military march influenced a lot in the feelings that Umberto had, like the suicidal thought a march of funeral came out and also when the landlady sings shows how happy she is, but desperate the others.

  2. Nice post Moshe. I felt the same way about the movie as I felt the movie would be slow and would fail to elicit any feelings from me. I was quite shocked as to how dramatic the movie was and how successful it was in making the audience moved by Umberto D’s acting and simple character. The film was very simple on the surface but after watching the movie you area truly shocked as to how interesting and gripping it is. I am also used to the blockbusters of today (sadly) but after seeing this movie you get a whole different perspectiive as to what a movie should be like. Great post, keep writing!

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