La Grande Guerrai continues an unapologetically noxious tradition unfortunately about as old as cinematography itself whereby war films attempt to meld frank and therefore credible accounts of the psychology as well as physiology of warfare together with the most brazenlyii prepubescent and therefore utterly discredible conception of gender relations. I guess everyone else being forever virgins it is then my sad lot to point out that while the life (meaning, death) of soldiers is rather exactly as depicted, the sexuality (meaning, rape) of soldiers is nothing like it at allllll. Nor should it be, this being the more offensively impertinent portion of the shameless infantilism attempting to sprawl itself over things that readily constitute its antithesis. Nor should it be, the sexuality of soldiers should absolutely not be fit for girly consumption. The sexuality of soliders should be consumptive of girlies, girlihoods an' girlyworlds ; and is.
That abomination aside, the parts that work do work : Mangano is a beautiful whore, Sordi is a superlatively faggoty knave, war is war, the happy sibilant widow just doesn't know it yet and peace's this fairy tale kids go to sleep with. Like Babbo Natale. I suppose the item aspires to some sort of destructuring parody of the facts of life ; but in that line it works exactly as well as these ever do.
Still, there's many worse ways to spend a couple of hours.———
- 1959, by Mario Monicelli, with Alberto Sordi, Vittorio Gassman (I soliti) and a most delicious Silvana Mangano (Il Scopone).
Really one perfectly practicable avenue into discussing this film is to deem it a remake of I soliti ignoti, composed of a cheaper, taller Cardinale and the same Calabrese (Memmo Carotenuto), substituting Sordi for Mastroianni as the public anchor, but outside of these purely cosmetic adjustments of drapery nevertheless draping very much the same narrative structure. Its "war" rather than "theft" that the impardonably inconsequential Italians are pursuing this installment, but really... [↩]
- Sfacciata, sfrontata, spudorata, you get the idea. [↩]