There are times when all you need is a few minutes of introduction to finish understanding why some actors became movie icons. The clearest example that comes to mind is the first seconds of John Wayne in ‘Stagecoach’, where John Ford presents him to us as an imposing figure who will become transcendent in the film and, by extension, in the history of the cinema.
A few seconds that make it clear to you why he had the race he had, even if they seem very simple. A similar case could be that of Gina Lollobrigida, where you can find a moment of those in any of his works. You can understand why she became a movie icon just by watching her “singing” as she polishes a boot on a balcony in her introduction to ‘The law‘. That charisma is not learned.
want to be a dove
It’s one of those simple but very careful moments from the 1959 Jules Dassin film, which can be seen through Filmin. After a brave uninterrupted sequence where his camera observes a building in the Italian town where the action takes place, offering us a clear and quick review of life in the region, he introduces us to the most desired and disruptive element that is the character of Lollobrigida. In a few minutes you understand everything you need to understand, both about the movie you are going to see and about the leading actress.
‘The Law’ Presents a particular Italian town marked by hierarchies. Every night in the local tavern the men of the area meet for a particular game where one of them will become the boss for one night and has permission to humiliate the rest. A cruel ritual that the men then try to compensate by displaying their frustration where they are first caught, usually the women of the town, which is maintained to get away from the reality where they are continuously under the rule of a local aristocrat, with more than enough money for everyone. They want to be under your control.
In between, there are also various love labyrinths between various inhabitants of the town, including the character of Marietta played by Lollobrigida, who explores the love of two men who can take him out under the oppressive control of the aristocrat. However, more than the love of a man, what she craves is a freedom that is frowned upon in such a conservative town and God fearing, so he won’t accept anything.
‘The law’: illusions to be able to resist
The film turns out to be fascinating tone exercise, where there is a place for the noir that Dassin is more used to with films like ‘The Naked City’ or ‘Night in the City’ with more Italian genres such as neorealism or a certain way of understanding sitcom. An interesting mix produced somewhat by necessity, as the director was banned from working in Hollywood due to his connection with the communist party in the 1930s.
A vision that is undoubtedly transferred to ‘The Law’, exposing the oppressive hierarchy marked by purchasing power, forcing workers to seek revenge in the form of a game where they can apply the law to their liking, albeit in an imaginary and cruel. Are the crumbs that allows them to stay anchored in a place like thisfrom which they would like to fly like a dove but they find themselves face to face with their lack of wings.
Dassin wonderfully introduces us to a particular ecosystem, leaving behind fascinating reflections as he explores a series of complex characters, which he develops through an interesting mix of genres that mesh beautifully. It is surprising that ‘La ley’ does not have a higher consideration than it does, despite its exquisiteness, its uniqueness and also because of a splendid cast with Lollobrigida shining with her own light. Indeed, worth to be recovered.
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