->''"Fellini brought to maturity this conviction. That in order to extract profound truth from the reality of the phenomenal world that appears before us, you must reinvent that reality"''
-->-- '''Vittorio Boarini''', Director of the Fellini Foundation
How does one go about describing such a movie? This is surely among FedericoFellini's best movies, exquisitely filmed and with a haunting soundtrack (by Nino Rota) that might follow you for the rest of your life. It is also a movie so fantastically nostalgic, filled with wondrous, larger-than-life characters, with an almost universal appeal. It's probably one of those movies that's best experienced.
The plot itself is largely autobiographical, from Fellini's own memories as a child, and can be said to consist the story of that an small Italian town of Borgo during the Mussolini dictatorship. It mostly focuses on a 'typical' Italian family and their numerous mishaps, but there are many, many side-characters and side-stories...
It was widely praised at the time of its release, being exceptionally well received by critics (some even calling it a instant classic) and winning the Oscar for best foreign language film, and to this day it tends to appear in 'best of all time' lists, with merit.
!! This movie has examples of:
* AgeInappropriateDress: Titta who's well into his teens wears short pants and a childish cap.
* BigBeautifulWoman: The tobacconist.
* BlackShirt: The originals.
* BlindMusician: The accordionist.
* BookEnds: The "puffballs" (floating seed pods) that serve as the first sign of spring.
* BreakingTheFourthWall: Constantly.
* BumblingDad: Titto's father.
* ADateWithRosiePalms: Four of the kids combine it with AutoErotica.
* DirtyOldMan: Titta's grandfather.
* DontMakeMeTakeMyBeltOff: Titta's father chases him him with a belt because Titta had urinated on a fellow movie patron's hat.
* DumbBlonde: Volpina.
* UsefulNotes/FascistItaly: One of the most poignant examples.
* HugeHolographicHead: Though itís not holographic, but made of flowers. And itís Mussoliniís.
* ManChild: Titto's uncle, who has developmental problems and lives in an institution out in the country.
* MoodWhiplash: [[spoiler: The unexpected illness and death of Titta's mother interupts the slapstick.]]
** [[spoiler: This also happens when Titto's father is dragged in for questioning by the Black Shirts and forced to drink castor oil. The mood changes abruptly again when the father is being bathed by his wife after soiling himself and Titto laughs and asks why he stinks.(Presumably not realizing what had happened).]]
* NoIndoorVoice: Everyone
* NunsAreSpooky: A dwarf nun at that!
* UrineTrouble: In the middle of a class, done by some kid, in a very ingenious way.
* WorkingClassPeopleAreMorons: Seriously; almost all the town is showed as a bunch of ignorant buffoons. As an ingenious TakeThat, one woman proudly declares that almost all the town is a member of the Fascist Party. Think about it.