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I VINTI (Raro
Video) 1953. Drama. B&W. 114 minutes. French, Italian, English.
Not rated. In three unrelated segments, a murder is committed in Paris,
Rome, and London by affluent youths. In Paris, a group of friends plan the
murder of a fellow friend for his money. An Italian teen, who has a
smoking girlfriend (Anna Maria Ferrero), gets involved in a smuggling
ring, which leads to a killing. London is falling after a young poet
happily exploits the credit for finding a strangled prostitute (who has
the most annoying voice ever).
Before its release in 1953, director Michelangelo Antonioni was
forced to edit, cut, and alter several aspects of the film. Even after all
that, the thing was still banned in France for a decade. Censors found the
youth violence off putting and the voice of an inappropriate social
message. Compared to today’s cinematic violence, I Vinti (translates The
Vanquished) could air on The Disney Channel, but it obviously ruffled
feathers over there back then. Hell, today, you see worse violence in your
local McDonald’s. The strangulation scene in the London segment is by
far the quickest in cinematic history, and off screen. The acting is way
melodramatic, but the actors do a great job, especially the chap who plays
London poet Aubrey; Peter Reynolds (who in 1975 burned to death
after falling asleep while smoking!). The
production values are stunning and the restored print quality is amazing.
Antonioni does a grand job and ends the film with the perfect fade away.
Extras include the uncut Italian segment, an Antonioni short, and
interviews with the film’s producer and actor Franco Interlenghi. Also
comes with a six page booklet detailing the film and its troubles. –