Similarities Between Bitter Rice And Rocco And His Brothers

2006 Words9 Pages
Both Giuseppe De Santis’ Bitter Rice and Luchino Visconti’s Rocco and His Brothers are stories of unhappy lots attempting to escape their squalid fates by fleeing their current circumstances for the greener grass on the other side. Francesca and Walter, the runaway city thieves of Bitter Rice, look for safety amidst the grueling annual rice harvest provided by the mighty river Po, while the poor Parondi family of Rocco and His Brothers seek a new life amidst the unfamiliar urban chaos of Milan. While the two films vary widely in structure - Bitter Rice is a snappy melodrama that traffics a great deal in sex appeal and tells the story of a single season, whereas Rocco and His Brothers is a sweeping epic set over the course of years concerning the delicate bonds between family - their real similarity lies in their basic moral center: hard work is a righteous calling, whereas attempting to skirt work in order to enjoy urban luxuries is a deplorable waste. Bitter Rice is the story of roles destined for two women; one a hardworking rice farmer, the other a passive accomplice to a morally bankrupt crook. Over the course of the film, our two main characters Silvania and Francesca trade places, with Silvania descending into immorality with the help of two-bit thief Walter and Francesca coming to her senses alongside world-weary soldier Marco. Meanwhile, Rocco and His Brothers’ eponymous protagonist is an almost saintly figure, sacrificing personal success and romantic satisfaction

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