Luciano Emmer

Sog.: Sergio Amidei. Scen.: Sergio Amidei, Agenore Incrocci, Furio Scarpelli, Francesco Rosi, Vincenzo Talarico. F.: Mario Montuori. M.: Otello Colangeli. Scgf.: Virgilio Marchi. Mus.: Alessandro Cicognini. Int.: Marcello Mastroianni (Mario De Santis), Franca Valeri (Isolina Fornaciari), Giovanna Ralli (Valeria Masetti), Memmo Carotenuto (Quirino), Ave Ninchi (signora Masetti), Vittorio De Sica (avvocato Principe), Marisa Merlini (Enza Masetti), Guglielmo Inglese (don Vincenzino). Prod.: Royal Film, Filmel, Alba Films. 35mm. D.: 100’. Bn.

T. it.: Italian title. T. int.: International title. T. alt.: Alternative title. Sog.: Story. Scen.: Screenplay. F.: Cinematography. M.: Editing. Scgf.: Set Design. Mus.: Music. Int.: Cast. Prod.: Production Company. L.: Length. D.: Running Time. f/s: Frames per second. Bn.: Black e White. Col.: Color. Da: Print source

Film Notes

During a moment of crisis for the Italian cinema, just before the emergence of the commedia all’italiana, Emmer shot two lesser films starring Marcello Mastroianni, whom he had used from the very beginning as a comic actor and who had just been launched by the success of two films by Blasetti with Sophia Loren. Il momento più bello and Il bigamo tried out a new path for comedy and, despite their limited ambitions, captured as always a Rome caught between old and new in which petit bourgeois characters came up against small but significant dilemmas: new media technologies and the role of the woman in the workplace; changes and paradoxes within the family. A cosmetics salesman accused of bigamy is convinced by a lawyer (Vittorio De Sica, of course) to indict himself. In Italian cinema, the court is always a site of paradox, of ridiculous injustice.

“I don’t think that Il bigamo, the final film I shot with a screenplay by Amidei, belongs to the commedia all’italiana; rather it is closer to the unreality of farce. […] The most vivid memory I have of that film is of the final day in which I was able to observe Vittorio De Sica’s extraordinary performance as a prince of the court, distracted and forgetful enough to be unsure as to whether he was on the side of the prosecution or of the defence. […] I was able to brush up against the grandeur of that key player in Italian cinema, for whom any label such as ‘actor’ was completely inadequate: he was simply a very great artist” (Luciano Emmer).

Emiliano Morreale

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