Dedications: My four late friends Rory, Stan, Bryan, Jeff - shine on you crazy diamonds, they would have blogged too. Then theres Garry from Brisbane, Franco in Milan, Mike now in S.F. / my '60s-'80s gang: Ned & Joseph in Ireland; in England: Frank, Des, Guy, Clive, Joe & Joe, Ian, Ivan, Nick, David, Les, Stewart, the 3 Michaels / Catriona, Sally, Monica, Jean, Ella, Anne, Candie / and now: Daryl in N.Y., Jerry, John, Colin, Martin and Donal.

Saturday, 15 March 2014

The girl with a suitcase - 1961

A taster of Valerio Zurlini's 1961 Italian classic: LA RAGAZZA CON LA VALIGIA or THE GIRL WITH A SUITCASE
She is Claudia Cardinale (before Visconti immortalised her as Angelica in THE LEOPARD in 1962 or as SANDRA in 1965) and he is Jacques Perrin, that young French actor who built his reputation here, and in Zurlini's FAMILY DIARY with Mastroianni, and Bolognini's LA CORRUZIONE - reviewed here at Italian label, and of course he was the blond sailor in Demy's YOUNG GIRLS OF ROCHEFORT, and he was in Costa-Gavras's THE SLEEPING CAR MURDERS in 1965 and Z in 1970, and the mature Perrin appeared in the Euro hit CINEMA PARADISO, and he is still working now, as indeed is Claudia - see label for other posts on her. 

THE GIRL WITH A SUITCASE is a haunting tale of unrequired romance as we observe Lorenzo, who's 16 and born to a wealthy family in Parma, tries to make things right toward a girl, Aida, whom his older brother has mistreated. In extending kindness and standing up for her, he comes of age. But, is there anything he can do that will alter Aida's situation or her prospects? 

This central scene where Lorenzo watches Aida dancing with that older man has that close-up of him  that lasts for at least one minute. He looks at them dancing, looks away, takes a sip from his drink, fidgets, with all these different expressions on his face, from jealousy to despair. The whole film is like that, and has that early '60s Italian look in spades.

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