Movie: The Bicycle Thief

In post World War II Rome, Antonio Ricci is trying hard to make a living. He gets selected for a job for sticking posters in the city. But the job requires him to have a bicycle. Though he does not own one, he tells his employer that he has one. In reality, he had pawned his bicycle a few days back. He goes back home and convinces his wife about the job. The job is well paid and will set their life. So, his wife pawns the bed covers and raises the money to get the bicycle back from the pawnshop.

But, misfortune strikes again. The bicycle is stolen from Antonio on the first day of his job. The next day, Antonio along with son, Bruno searches for the bicycle. They have limited time before the bicycle is dismantled and sold in the market. So, Antonio and Bruno searches the entire Rome for the stolen bicycle.

This is a black and white Italian movie directed by Vittorio de Sica. The monochromatic tone of the movie accentuates the plight of the protagonists. The movie develops like a short story. Although the technology was nascent in 1948 at the time of the release, de Sica is able to capture the tension and urgency of protagonists by showing them moving – walking, running or riding - all the time.

The lead characters – Antonio and Bruno – are played by unknown actors. But the casting is apt. The story focuses on the white, grey and dark sides of Antonio.

The search for the bicycle thief is riveting and surprising.

Language: Italian

Genre: Drama

Rating: ****

Picture Courtesy: Yahoo! Movies

Tags: Movies,The Bicycle Thief,Vittorio de Sica,Italian,Drama


  1. I had watched this classic way back at the Cine Club in college. thanks for bringing back the memories.

  2. @Sucharita - Cine Club! May be you should write a blog on that. These kind of movies are ideal for Cine Clubs. This movie is taught in film schools. Unfortunately, I couldn't write more on the movie without revealing the plot.


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