ITALY

LA BELLA DI LODI

1963 – 35mm – B/N – 80’

 

Direction: Mario Missiroli

Screenplay: Mario Missiroli, Alberto Arbasino from his novel

Cinematography: Tonino Delli Colli

Editing: Nino Baragli

Set design: Danilo Donati

Music: Piero Umiliani

Costumes: Danilo Donati

Cast: Stefania Sandrelli, Ángel Aranda, Elena Borgo, Maria Monti, Giuliana Pogliani, Cesare Di Montignano, Gianni

Clerici

Producer: Alfredo Bini

Production: Arco Film

 

SYNOPSIS

Roberta, a young and pretty land owner from Lombardy, meets Franco, a penniless and opportunistic mechanic, on a Versilia beach. Immediately attracted to each other, they start a relationship that develops as they drive along the “Autostrada del Sole” motorway, between encounters and escapes to luxury hotels in several parts of Italy, breathing the atmosphere of the economic boom. Roberta then tries to capitalise on the man’s skills by buying a garage to help him become a car industry manager. Their relationship, based on love but with a careful eye on business, works despite their different characters.

 

CRITICAL NOTE

“As could be expected, the partnership between a young, quarrelsome, sophisticated “pamphletaire” like Arbasino and a subtle, cultivated, clever theatrical director like Mario Missiroli (who worked with Zurlini on Cronaca familiare ) has resulted in a provocative work. The provocation arises from the plot itself, the rich girl falling in love with the poor boy and marrying him after a series of ups and downs. A well-worn theme, on the surface, but it only serves as a starting point to erode and overturn romantic clichés.”

(Morando Morandini,Bianco e Nero, year 24th, No.3, March 1963)