Pssst, want to check out La ciociara in our new look?
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Sophia Loren plays the widowed mother of a 13-year-old in war-torn Italy in Two Women (La Ciociara), a story that promises tragedy, but keeps it at bay for most of its length, building tension even as it delivers light comedy and romance. Not that anything is romanticized. This is definitely in the realism camp, acting as a slice of life about people caught up in Mussolini's losing war who really have no interest in it, but worried their lives could be destroyed by it at any time, and thus interrupted by moments of violence and danger. The posters all try to spoil the climax, but I won't except to say the English title is a darkly ironic choice. Loren, at the height of her powers, is magnetic in this. I found it a little hard to read the subtitles because it meant tearing myself away from her face. That said, the subs are just HORRENDOUS, full of mistakes, bad timing, and garbled syntax. Not enough to make it unwatchable, but they do provide irritations at regular intervals.
Loren is just stunning in this film. It is kind of odd to see Belmondo as kind of a geek, though.
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In 3 official lists
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This movie ranks #35 in 101 War Movies You Must See Before You Die
This movie ranks #57 in Il Grande Cinema Italiano
This movie ranks #937 in The Best 1,000 Movies Ever Made