Vittorio De Sica


Vittorio De Sica (July 7, 1901 – November 13, 1974) was an Italian director and actor, a leading figure in the neorealist movement. Four of the films he directed won Academy Awards: Sciuscià and Bicycle Thieves (honorary), while Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow and Il giardino dei Finzi Contini won the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film. Indeed, the great critical success of Sciuscià (the first foreign film to be so recognized by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences) and Bicycle Thieves helped establish the permanent Best Foreign Film Award. These two films are considered part of the canon of classic cinema. Bicycle Thieves was cited by Turner Classic Movies as one of the 15 most influential films in cinema history.

Other notable films as director include Two Women (1960), with Sophia Loren; The Last Judgment (1961), with Jack Palance, Ernest Borgnine, Melina Mercouri, Fernandel, Anouk Aimée, and Lino Ventura; After the Fox (1966), with Peter Sellers, Victor Mature and Britt Ekland; Women Times Seven (1967), with Shirley MacLaine, Peter Sellers, Michael Caine, Anita Ekberg, Alan Arkin, Vittorio Gassman, Rossano Brazzi, Philippe Noiret, Robert Morley, and Lex Barker; and the Voyage (1974), with Loren and Richard Burton.

De Sica was also nominated for the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for playing Major Rinaldi in American director Charles Vidor‘sadaptation of Ernest Hemingway’s A Farewell to Arms (1957), with Rock Hudson, Jennifer Jones and Elaine Stritch. The movie was panned by critics and proved a box office flop, but De Sica’s acting was considered the highlight of the film. He was also in Samuel L. Taylor’s The Monte Carlo Story (1956), with Marlene Dietrich, Arthur O’Connell, Natalie Trundy, Mischa Auer and Renato Rascel; Austerlitz (1960), with Peter Mondy, Jean Marais, Rossano Brazzi, Martine Carol, Palance, Claudia Cardinale, Orson Welles, Leslie Caron and, Jean-Louis Trintignant

Each review will be linked to the title below.

(*seen originally in theaters)

(**seen rereleased in theaters)

  • Red Roses (1940) – co-director
  • Maddalena, Zero for Conduct (1940)
  • Teresa Venerdì (1941)
  • Garibaldian in the Convent (1942)
  • The Children Are Watching Us (1944)
  • The Gate of Heaven (1945)
  • Shoeshine (1946)
  • Heart (1948) – co-director
  • Bicycle Thieves (1948)
  • Miracle in Milan (1951)
  • Umberto D. (1952)
  • Terminal Station (1953)
  • The Gold of Naples (1954)
  • The Roof (1956)
  • Anna of Brooklyn (1958) – co-director
  • Two Women (1960)
  • The Last Judgment (1961)
  • The Condemned of Altona (1962)
  • Boccaccio ’70 (1962) – directed by Mario Monicelli, Federico Fellini, & Luchino Visconti – anthology
  • Il Boom (1963)
  • Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow (1963)
  • Marriage Italian Style (1964)
  • A New World (1966)
  • After the Fox (1966)
  • Woman Times Seven (1967)
  • The Witches (1967) – anthology
  • A Place for Lovers (1968)
  • Sunflower (1970)
  • The Garden of Finzi-Continis (1970)
  • The Couples (1970) – anthology
  • From Referendum to the Constitution: 2 June (1971) – documentary
  • The Knights of Malta (1971) – documentary
  • We’ll Call Him Andrea (1972)
  • A Brief Vacation (1973)
  • The Voyage (1974)