Director Roberto Rossellini purportedly denied responsibility for the film, claiming the American version was cut by RKO beyond recognition. Cut or not cut, the film reflects no credit on him. Given elementary-school dialog to recite and impossible scenes to act, Ingrid Bergman's never able to make the lines real nor the emotion sufficiently motivated to seem more than an exercise.

Director Roberto Rossellini purportedly denied responsibility for the film, claiming the American version was cut by RKO beyond recognition. Cut or not cut, the film reflects no credit on him. Given elementary-school dialog to recite and impossible scenes to act, Ingrid Bergman’s never able to make the lines real nor the emotion sufficiently motivated to seem more than an exercise.

So many morally-questionable scenes apparently had to be removed that RKO found it necessary to insert a great deal of detail in other actions to stretch the film to its 81-minute length. [Version reviewed was US one].

The only visible touch of the famed Italian director is in the hard photography, which adds to the realistic, documentary effect of life on the rocky, lava-blanketed island. Rossellini’s penchant for realism, however, does not extend to Bergman. She’s always fresh, clean and well-groomed.

The story is of a girl (Bergman) in an Italian displaced persons camp who marries a native fisherman (Mario Vitale) of Stromboli so that she may be released. Miss Bergman hates it from the start, but she does grow to love her man.

Language of the pic is a bit confusing. Bergman, on an Italian isle, speaks English with a Swedish accent. Vitale’s voice has been dubbed and there’s little strain in deciphering his English. Renzo Cesana as the priest does the best job in the pic.

Stromboli

Italy - US

Production

Be-Ro/RKO. Director Roberto Rossellini; Producer Ingrid Bergman, Roberto Rossellini; Screenplay Roberto Rossellini, Art Cohn, Renzo Cesana, Sergio Amidei, Gianpaolo Callegari; Camera Otello Martelli; Editor Roland Gross, Jolanda Benvenuti; Music Renzo Rossellini

Crew

(B&W) Available on VHS. Extract of a review from 1950. Running time: 107 MIN.

With

Ingrid Bergman Mario Vitale Renzo Cesana Mario Sponzo
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