In Northern Italy’s Po Valley, an earthy rice-field worker (Silvana Mangano) falls in with a small-time criminal (Vittorio Gassman), who with his girlfriend (Doris Dowling) is planning a daring heist of the crop. Released in 1949, Bitter Rice is both a socially conscious look at field workers’ hardships and a melodrama of sex and violence—neorealism with a dose of pulp, enhanced by meticulously choreographed tracking shots by director Giuseppe De Santis and cinematographer Otello Martelli, whose other credits included Rossellini’s Paisà and Stromboli and Fellini’s La strada and La dolce vita. 109 min. In Italian with English subtitles. Criterion Collection. Introduced by Jenny McPhee, Center for Applied Liberal Arts, School of Professional Studies, NYU.
Co-sponsored by NYU’s Casa Italiana Zerilli-Marimò; Center for Applied Liberal Arts, School of Professional Studies; and Grey Art Gallery. Co-presented by The Criterion Collection. RSVP to casaitaliananyu.org. (Non-member RSVP does not guarantee a seat.)