Una Vita Difficile

Sordi triumphs at jet-black comedy...the closest America has come to Sordi is Jack Lemmon and Walter Matthau in their prime, rolled into one.


Una Vita Difficile

Silvio (Alberto Sordi), a leftist resistance fighter-turned-journalist, tries to cling to his political convictions while it becomes increasingly difficult to provide for his family. His wife, Elena (Lea Massari), supports his idealism less and less and reproaches him for not wanting to take advantage of the Italian post-war economic miracle. When she leaves him, Silvio tries to win her back by agreeing to a compromise with a rich industrialist.

"A STELLAR SPECIMEN OF COMMEDIA ALL'ITALIANA BY A TRUE MAESTRO OF THE FORM. Pulsate[s] with the breathlessness and disorientation of a country simultaneously grappling with the past and speeding toward a confusing future...Belongs in the company of Fellini's La Dolce Vita and Risi's Il Sorpasso. It also stands by itself as an exuberant bad time, a pity party that has no business being so much fun." — A.O. Scott, The New York Times

"It sounds absurd to even contemplate: an unreleased 1961 epic romance starring the legendary Alberto Sordi that tackles the decades after WWII — a mixture of sentiment and grand historic sweep that the Italians always did so well — that's somehow just getting a U.S. release." — Bilge Ebiri, New York Magazine

"Risi's deft seriocomic panorama, from Mussolini's fall to the rise of the postwar Roman oligarchy...Alberto Sordi triumphs at jet-black comedy when the antihero fails as an idealist, a husband, even as a sell-out. The closest America has come to Sordi is Jack Lemmon and Walter Matthau in their prime, rolled into one." — Michael Sragow, Air Mail
Not Rated
Comedy, Drama, Romance
Dino Risi
Rodolfo Sonego
Alberto Sordi, Lea Massari, Franco Fabrizi, Lina Valonghi
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