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Saturday, August 8, 2009

The Bicycle Thieves

Being a bit of a film buff its great to realise that one of the greatest ever movies made features our two wheeled companion

Bicycle Thieves (Italian: Ladri di biciclette, also known as The Bicycle Thief) is a 1948 Italian neorealist film directed by Vittorio De Sica. It tells the story of a poor man searching the streets of Rome for his stolen bicycle, which he needs to be able to work. The film is based on the novel of the same name by Luigi Bartolini and was adapted for the screen by Cesare Zavattini. It stars Lamberto Maggiorani as the poor man searching for his lost bicycle and Enzo Staiola as his son.

The film is frequently on critics' and directors' lists of the best films ever made. It was given an Academy Honorary Award in 1950, and, just four years after its release, was deemed the greatest film of all time by the magazine Sight & Sound's poll of filmmakers and critics in 1952.[2] The film placed sixth as the greatest ever made in the latest directors' poll, conducted in 2002.[3]

The film tells the story of Antonio Ricci, an unemployed worker who gets a job posting flyers in the depressed post-World War II economy of Italy. To keep the job, he must have a bicycle, so his wife Maria pawns her wedding sheets to get the money to redeem his bicycle from the pawnbroker. Early in the film, the bike is stolen, and Antonio, and his son Bruno, spend the remainder of the film searching for it. Antonio manages to locate the thief (who, it seems, had already sold the bicycle) and summons the police, but with no proof and with the thief’s neighbors willing to give him a false alibi, he abandons this cause.

At the end of the film Antonio, desperate to keep his job, attempts to steal a bicycle himself. He is caught and humiliated in front of Bruno; but the owner of the bicycle declines to press charges. Antonio and his family face a bleak future as the film ends, coupled with Antonio's realization that he is not morally superior to the thief.

Its compelling viewing!!!!!!


  1. I watched the movie years ago, but your mention of it prompts me to bicycle over to the library to check out their copy and view it again.

    Like I needed an excuse for a bike ride.


  2. It is a Great Storyline with a Modern Equivalent Happening on our Streets Daily.

    There are Plenty of People who Depend on their Bikes for Transport in their Jobs , Road Warriors who usually have Dreadlocks or Long Ropey Hair Semi Crusty Types Doing Courier Service between the Various Office Blocks on the South side of Dublin. These are usually Bike Fanatics who sometimes use Top of the Range Racing Bikes or even Fixies. Then there is the Ubiquitous Window Cleaner with Chamois ,Water Bucket and Ladder going around the Houses in an Houing Estate and the occasional Plumber on a Bike. These are Recessionery Times my Friend and People are going back to the Old Days when the Bike was King in Order to do a bit of Work.

    Back to the 1950ties and 60ties, Hard Times. They sometimes get their Bikes Stolen just like in the Film.

  3. Wow, sounds really good. I'll have to look for it.



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