Also known as
Italy [1946] - 87m
Directed by
Vittorio De Sica
More info on
Shoeshine poster


March 09, 2022


Early De Sica that already sports many of the typical Italian neorealism traits. It's certainly not my favored type of film, but the above-average cinematography does add a tiny bit of extra flair to Shoeshine. Not enough to make it a pleasant or easy watch, but I've struggled harder with certain other films in the genre.

Two kids are doing odd jobs to save up for a horse. A couple of older boys involve them in a scheme to rob a fortune-teller, though they only find out when the robbery is already taking place. Things take a turn for the worse when the fortune-teller identifies the boys as the culprits, after which they are sent to juvenile prison.

An excess of drama and highly evocative performances aren't the best premise for a touching film, at least not in my book. I prefer a more subtle approach to drama. The high-contrast black and white cinematography is a bonus and the short runtime a blessing, but it's not enough to turn me into a believer.

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