When the trio realize there are no babies in the town to play Jesus, they accuse the childless country folk of egoism and shame them into going home to “make babies.” This is the start of a picaresque, magical journey to other lands (where they meet God the Father, among others) in search of the new Messiah.
All-too-brief cameos by Pasolini regulars Ninetto Davoli, Franco Citti and Laura Betti don’t do much to make “We Free Kings” a significant film. It is mildly enjoyable as a dignified romp through Citti and Pasolini’s favorite
locations: shantytowns on the outskirts of the big cities, empty fields stretching out desolately from low-rent housing projects.
Orlando, Bauchau and Zacher strain to work together as a comic team, but the material just isn’t there. Moschin is one of the stronger characters as the unbuttoned parish priest whose only concern is getting his pageant out on time.
Pic contains a few moments of lyrical poetry, like the poor man’s ode to sky, air and sun, that remind viewers of a magical-mystical Italian film tradition (De Sica’s “Miracle in Milan,” Pasolini’s “The Hawks and the Sparrows”) that has
long since disappeared. Tech credits aim for a naive, homemade look that underlines pic’s sincerity.