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 directed by Roberto Rossellini, shot by Ubaldo Arata

Every month,  I embed a film...

Join me as I share some of my favorite films for shutterbugs 
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We got lucky again this month...

May, 2022: I'm keeping this up from April, because all photographers should watch it!

Rome, Open City, directed by Roberto Rossellini (1945)
Running time: 1 hour, 42 minutes 

When I saw Rome, Open City in cinephile YouTuber Gianalessandro Martin's video list, I knew I'd found June's film embed.

Directed by Roberto Rossellini just after the end of World War II, this film tells a harrowing story of Italian resistance during Nazi occupation.  Considered the first film of the revolutionary Italian Realist movement, Rome, Open City concerns itself with the lives and everyday heroism of ordinary people.  The film was not shot in studios, but was filmed largely on the sly on location and in the war ravaged, occupied streets of Rome.  Rossellini bought the film stock on the black market, and used many non-professionals instead of actors to back up film stars Anna Magnani and Aldo Fabrizi.

As an unabashed film nerd, I adore this movie --  it's one of my favorites in the neorealist canon.  As a street photographer, I consider it essential viewing.  I can't get over what cinematographer Ubaldo Arata managed to create under extreme street conditions.  Rather than looking like a string of newsreel clips, Rome, Open City is a work of art -- a mosaic of gorgeous compositions and a time capsule of post-war Rome.  

For more on Rome, Open City and Italian Neorealism, check out the great introduction by the amazing folks at One Hundred Years of Cinema below.  Watch Rome, Open City in its entirety above.

Check back every month for my curated film picks for photographers. (Occasionally I leave a great one up for more than a month, but I usually post new ones.)