Star rating - 8/10
This newly restored black and white classic 1953 movie from Italian director Roberto Rossellini is a stylish treat. It stars George Sanders and Ingrid Bergman as a respectable well-off couple whose marriage is in trouble, driving through Italy to tie up the sale of a late relative's villa. The tension between them grows increasingly to bitterness as the journey progresses, which must have been painful for both Rossellini and Bergman, whose own real life marriage was in trouble at the time.
The breakdown in relations increases with the beautiful bay of Naples as a backdrop, and Bergman makes a poignant visit to Pompeii, whilst her husband is frankly bored with looking at ancient stuffy relics. The acting is first class, the clothes and fifties styling exquisite, and watching Ingrid Bergman is, as always, an absolute pleasure.
If you are a fan of Brief Encounter, I can guarantee you will love this less romantic, and more modernist story of a troubled relationship from a master director.