It may be old, it may be in black and white and it may be Italian, but its such a beautifully sad film. Even people with the coldest of hearts would feel something from this movie.
Its set in post-WW2 Rome and its beyond poor. If you’ve ever complained about our current so-called ‘recession’, you will feel so guilty if you watch this movie [and you can on your computer, Netflix has it available on demand!]. We don’t have people queuing for hours just to get on public transport. Its unbelievably poor and made me feel so blessed to have what I have.
Our main character gets a job out of the very few that are available. However, he can only obtain the job if he owns a bicycle. His loving wife sells their bed sheets so they can buy a bicycle. They’re so happy that he finally has a job and they can start ‘living’ again. On his first day, the bike is stolen. You watch this man and his son go through so much [emotionally] as they search for the bike. Its not just a bike, its their ticket out of extreme poverty. This bike means food for the family. Throughout the film, we never forget this. We beg and pray that they find it, they’re the nicest family and they have a cute baby too. The dad feels he is forced to steal and you shout at the screen for him not to, that if he does it would be worse than not having a bike at all.
The child in this movie is an incredibly good actor. There is one shot which broke my heart, his dad has just been humiliated and he knows they won’t find the bike and have no money. The kid walks down the street, brushing off the dirt from his father’s hat whilst sobbing in despair. Its not hysterical crying, its that quiet crying that shows the pain most. He joins his father and he looks up; his father is quietly weeping too but staring straight ahead. The son holds his father’s hand, hoping to give him a little comfort and to tell him that he knows he tried his best. Its so heartbreaking, you know they’ve tried so hard and deserve the food but they’re at the end of their rope. I know that my dad would do all he could if we, heaven forbid, were ever in that situation. I’m so glad it ends there, I don’t think I could of watched the aftermath of that.
I can see why a lot of directors have praised this movie so much. It is rather inspirational and makes you thankful for what you have. That’s what pisses me off, when people [mainly teenagers] complain about the most ridiculous things and are so ungrateful for what they have! “Oh, my boyfriend of a week has broken up with me and I have a spot, there’s no point in living any more!” “Yes… I think there are children in Africa holding a rock concert for you.” Ungrateful sods. Sorry, end of rant! But please, be grateful for what you have, you have a roof over your head, food on the table, fresh water and a family who will always love you, no matter what.