Best Blu-ray Deals
Best Blu-ray Deals, See All the Deals »
Top deals |
A trio of swindlers roam the countryside with schemes to bilk poor people out of their money, their most famous of which is disguising themselves as priests.
For more about Il Bidone and the Il Bidone Blu-ray release, see Il Bidone Blu-ray Review published by Dr. Svet Atanasov on January 14, 2014 where this Blu-ray release scored 4.0 out of 5.
Director: Federico Fellini
Writer: Federico Fellini
Starring: Broderick Crawford, Giulietta Masina, Richard Basehart
» See full cast & crew
Il Bidone Blu-ray Review
Reviewed by Dr. Svet Atanasov, January 14, 2014
Federico Fellini's "Il Bidone" a.k.a "The Swindle" (1955) arrives on Blu-ray courtesy of British distributors Eureka Entertainment. The supplemental features on the disc include an original trailer for the film and video interview with French writer, producer and director Dominique Delouche. Also included with this release is a 36-page illustrated booklet featuring the words of the legendary Italian director, rare imagery, and more. In Italian, with optional English subtitles for the main feature. Region-B "locked".
Augusto (Broderick Crawford, Fritz Lang's Human Desire) is the eldest of the three con men. He speaks only when spoken to and most of the time looks jaded. His partners are the energetic Picasso (Richard Basehart, La Strada, Titanic), who has told his girl (Giulietta Masina, La Strada) that he is a businessman, and the compulsive liar Roberto (Franco Fabrizi, The Italian Connection, Satyricon).
The men travel through the countryside and cheat the poor. Occasionally, they would also visit the slums and sell fake housing certificates to the naive. A portion of the money they earn is then spent in the city's posh night clubs. The men are well respected there because they always drink the best champagne and tip generously.
For the most part Augusto, Picasso and Roberto are happy with the gigs, but they want more. They want to be as successful as the big-timers, who have other people working for them while they throw lavish parties to entertain themselves. During one such party Augusto attempts to talk to the host, a man like him who started from the bottom, but his business proposal is quickly rejected. It hurts him to admit it, but he understands perfectly why his offer isn't taken seriously - - he is in a different league, the wrong league where small-time con men like him belong.
Augusto's life changes dramatically when he accidentally meets his daughter Patrizia, whom he hasn't seen since last Christmas. She is with friends and has to go. He promises to call her and spend some time with her. A few days later, they meet again and she reveals to him that she would like to continue studying, while working as a cashier to pay for her tuition. But to get the job she needs to deposit 300,000 lire which she does not have. Later that day Augusto promises to pay the deposit, but a former 'client' recognizes him and after a quick stop at the local police station his life begins to spin out of control.
Il Bidone a.k.a The Swindle, the second entry in the great Federico Fellini's Trilogy of Loneliness, is very much a film of two contrasting halves. The first is infused with light humor and sees Italy as a country that is slowly recovering from a devastating war. Life is neither easy nor fair there, but there is a feeling that with the new order, as flawed as it may be, life will eventually get better.
Halfway through the film, however, the humor disappears and Fellini takes out his whip. Italy is now a collapsed state where the poor and the naive are forgotten. Some have come to the cities looking for a new start but have quickly been pushed to the slums and then abandoned; others have chosen to remain in their rural homes but they have also been left to survive on their own. Living in extreme poverty, both groups have become easy targets for scammers like Augusto and his friends.
This sobering look at life in post-war Italy reminds of the works of the great Roberto Rossellini. Also during the second half, where Augusto undergoes a serious character transformation and is eventually forced to reevaluate his life, there are familiar religious overtones that point to Rossellini's enormous influence. (In fact, the entire final act easily could have appeared in a Rossellini film).
The film's episodic structure is most appropriate. In a way it supports the idea that there is no honor amongst thieves by imitating the gradual collapse of their friendship. Initially Fellini follows closely the three con men, but as the humor disappears Picasso and Roberto are slowly isolated and Augusto left alone with his thoughts.
The film's energetic music score is by the great Nino Rota (Francis Ford Coppola's The Godfather, Rene Clement's Purple Noon).
Il Bidone Blu-ray, Video Quality
Presented in its original aspect ratio of 1.37:1, encoded with MPEG-4 AVC and granted a 1080p transfer, Federico Fellini's Il Bidone arrives on Blu-ray courtesy of British distributors Eureka Entertainment.
The high-definition transfer is beautiful. Close-ups boast outstanding depth, especially when there is an abundance of natural light (see screencapture #2), while the nighttime/darker footage impresses with excellent clarity (see screencapture #3). Contrast levels are stable throughout the entire film. There are no traces of problematic degraining corrections. The film also looks sharp, not sharpened, and vibrant. The whites and grays are stable and beautifully balanced, while the blacks are solid and natural. A couple of extremely light scratches are visible, but there are absolutely no large debris, cuts, damage marks, or stains. Obviously, imperfections have been carefully removed. Lastly, there are a few inherited shaky frame transitions (clearly source related), but there are no serious stability issues to report in this review. All in all, this is a lovely presentation of Fellini's classic film that is guaranteed to please its fans. (Note: This is a Region-B "locked" Blu-ray release. Therefore, you must have a native Region-B or Region-Free PS3 or SA in order to access its content).
Il Bidone Blu-ray, Audio Quality
There is only one standard audio track on this Blu-ray release: Italian LPCM 1.0. For the record, Eureka Entertainment have provided optional English subtitles for the main feature.
The lossless track is solid. The soundtrack by the great Nino Rota benefits the most from the lossless treatment as the music is indeed very well rounded yet quite vibrant. Also, there are no distortions during the woodwind and brass solos. The dialog is clean, stable, and easy to follow. The English translation is excellent.
Il Bidone Blu-ray, Special Features and Extras
Il Bidone Blu-ray, Overall Score and Recommendation
This is a beautiful Blu-ray release of Federico Fellini's Il Bidone. The film, which during the years has been unjustly dismissed as one of the Italian maestro's lesser works, looks spectacular in high-definition. The interview with Fellini's assistant director Dominique Delouche is also outstanding. Buy with confidence, folks. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.
Use the thumbs up and thumbs down icons to agree or disagree that the title is similar to Il Bidone. You can also suggest completely new similar titles to Il Bidone in the search box below.
Similar titles suggested by members
Il Bidone Blu-ray, News and Updates
• Federico Fellini's Il Bidone Officially Announced - November 28, 2013
British distributors Eureka Entertainment have officially announced that they will release on Blu-ray Federico Fellini's Il Bidone a.k.a The Swindle (1955), starring Broderick Crawford, Richard Basehart, Giulietta Masina, and Franco Fabrizi. The release will be ...
Il Bidone Blu-ray Screenshots
Back to Il Bidone Blu-ray »
Trending Blu-ray Movies
Trending in Theaters
This web site is not affiliated with the Blu-ray Disc Association.
All trademarks are the property of the respective trademark owners.
© 2002-2015 Blu-ray.com. All rights reserved.