Revered as one of the foundation stones of Italian neorealism, it is a simple, powerful film about a man who needs a job.
This story is so direct it plays more like a parable than a drama.
True, Ricci is a character entirely driven by class and economic need. There isn't a lot else to him, although he comes alive in the pizzeria scene. True, the movie doesn't make a point of contrasting his poverty with high-living millionaires (wealth is illustrated as the ability to buy a plate of spaghetti). But if the film is allowed to wait long enough--until the filmmakers are dead, until neorealism is less an inspiration than a memory--"The Bicycle Thief" escapes from its critics and becomes, once again, a story. It is happiest that way.
Such films stand outside time. A man loves his famil...