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Mafioso

Overview

Alberto Lattuada's dark comedy Mafioso was little seen in the United States until it was given a well-received theatrical re-release by Rialto Pictures in 2007, and now the Criterion Collection has made the film available to viewers who aren't in driving distance of a worthwhile revival theater on DVD. Mafioso has been given a widescreen transfer to disc, letterboxed at the 1.85:1 aspect ratio on conventional televisions and enhanced for anamorphic playback on 16x9 monitors. The source materials used for this ...
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Overview

Alberto Lattuada's dark comedy Mafioso was little seen in the United States until it was given a well-received theatrical re-release by Rialto Pictures in 2007, and now the Criterion Collection has made the film available to viewers who aren't in driving distance of a worthwhile revival theater on DVD. Mafioso has been given a widescreen transfer to disc, letterboxed at the 1.85:1 aspect ratio on conventional televisions and enhanced for anamorphic playback on 16x9 monitors. The source materials used for this transfer are virtually spotless, and the broad range of grey tones in Armando Nannuzzi's cinematography has been reproduced with impressive accuracy. The audio has been mastered in Dolby Digital Mono, and the results are pleasingly bright and vivid, especially given the age of the movie. The dialogue is in Italian, with optional English subtitles. Criterion has kitted this out with their usual compliment of bonus materials, including a charming 1996 television interview with Alberto Lattuada conducted by filmmaker Daniele Luchetti, recent conversations with Lattuada's widow Carla Del Poggio and son Alessandro Lattuada, promotional artwork created for the film by Keiko Kimura, and trailers for the 1962 Italian release as well as the 2007 American reissue. The disc is accompanied by a booklet featuring an appreciation of Mafioso by Phillip Lopate, an essay on its place in the pantheon of Italian crime cinema by Roberto Chiesi, and highlights from a 1982 interview with Lattuada. Mafioso is an overlooked gem of Italian comedy of the Sixties, and Criterion has brought it to DVD with the loving care it deserves; cinephiles and folks with a taste for offbeat comedy will enjoy it greatly.
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Special Features

Ritratti d'autore - A 1966 interview with director Alberto Lattuada by filmmaker Daniele Luchetti; New video interviews with the director's wife, actress Carla Del Poggio (Variety Lights), and son, Alessandro Lattuada; Trailers for the original Italian release and the 2007 U.S. rerelease; Gallery of promotional caricatures by artist Keiko Kimura; New and improved English subtitles translation; Plus: New Essays by Phillip Lopate and Roberto Chiesi and a 1982 interview with Alberto Lattuada
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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Bruce Eder
Alberto Lattuada's Mafioso (1962) was a movie so far ahead of its era, that -- looking at it 45 years after its release -- it seems at times as though it had been made in a time warp. After all, who made comedies about the mob -- even the Sicilian mob -- in 1962? And in a neo-realist style, to boot? The basic plot is simple enough, about Nino (Alberto Sordi), a man of Sicilian birth who has made good in northern Italy as an auto plant foreman in Milan, who decides it's time for his wife and their two young children to meet his parents and family -- and also his friends from the little town in Sicily where he grew up, who also constitute "family." And gradually, as he falls back in with his boyhood companions and family acquaintances, Nino's blissful, "holy fool" approach to life brushes up against the harsher aspects of the social order in his Sicilian town -- he must take a long trip and then a short trip, spirited away one night to do a favor for the mob chieftain who controls his town and the surrounding area; a favor that is contingent upon his wartime experience using weapons. The movie is a quietly, subtly sly and knowing as its hero is naive and oblivious, and therein lies its center -- the disconnect between Nino's wide-eyed innocence, perfectly embodied by Sordi, and Lattuada's darkly, comically sinister vision, in which even a plate overflowing with fat-encrusted red meat takes on darkly threatening overtones. The black-and-white photography by Armando Nannuzzi only enhances the shadows and the humorously ominous, comical little touches that decorate Nino's Sicilian sojourn. Given an important section of the shooting that comes up late in the movie -- which we will not reveal here -- which was shot separately from the rest of the picture (and under near-siege conditions), there is some credit due, past that deserved by Lattuada, that will probably never be properly accorded. The movie was released in 1962 and barely seen in the United States, where distributors didn't have a clue about how to handle its dark humor -- before disappearing for 45 years, until its re-release in 2007.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 3/18/2008
  • UPC: 715515028226
  • Original Release: 1962
  • Rating:

  • Source: Criterion
  • Region Code: 1
  • Time: 1:42:00
  • Format: DVD

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Alberto Sordi Antonio Badalamenti
Ugo Attanasio Don Vincenzo
Michele Bally
Cinzia Bruno Donatella
Norma Bengell Marta
Technical Credits
Alberto Lattuada Director
Age Screenwriter
Rafael Azcona Screenwriter
Nino Baragli Editor
Antonio Cervi Producer
Dino de Laurentiis Executive Producer
Carlo Egidi Art Director
Marco Ferreri Screenwriter
Armando Nannuzzi Cinematographer
Piero Piccioni Score Composer
Nino Rota Score Composer
Furio Scarpelli Screenwriter
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Scene Index

Disc #1 -- Mafioso
1. Northern [6:48]
2. Gift [3:09]
3. Schedule [4:52]
4. Homecoming [3:55]
5. Culture [9:50]
6. Duty [5:03]
7. Don [7:01]
8. Honesty [4:41]
9. Prices [4:59]
10. Picciotto [4:21]
11. Communication [6:41]
12. Help [1:54]
13. Lucky [:01]
14. Happiness [5:46]
15. Favor [1:51]
16. Fragile [9:36]
17. Sights [3:57]
18. Details [2:29]
19. Barber [4:47]
20. Southern [7:25]
21. Bars [4:00]
1. Details [4:07]
2. Beauty [2:04]
3. Filmmaking [4:41]
4. Messages [5:41]
1. Lattuada [2:03]
2. Attanasio [1:34]
3. Script [1:55]
4. Sordi [1:13]
5. Luck [:53]
1. Theme [1:52]
2. Architecture [2:00]
3. Mafioso [2:16]
4. Eclectic [:59]
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Menu

Disc #1 -- Mafioso
   Play the Movie
   Chapters
   Supplements
      Ritratti d'autore
         Play
         Index
      Carla Del Poggio Interview
         Play
         Index
      Alessandro Lattuada Interview
         Play
         Index
      Caricatures
         Gallery
         About the Artist
      Trailers
         Original Italian Trailer
         U.S. Rerelease Trailer
   Subtitles
      On
      Off
      Intro
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