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Vite Strozzate Details


Usury is a serious problem in mid-'90s Italy, a country torn by the realities of a long-term economic recession and the people's desires for material prosperity. Unforutnately, with the closure of many Italian banks and the lack of available credit, these things are hard to come by legally, so many, especially businessmen, turn to loan sharks. According to surveys, over %65 of the nation's businesses have involvement with violent loan sharks who like their seafaring cousins will patiently circle the rickety financial lifeboats of their prey until the right moment and then rush in for the kill. This allegorical crime drama from Italian filmmaker Ricky Tognazzi chronicles the complex psychological relationship between one such loan shark and his prey, an old friend from college. Francesco (the intended victim) runs a failing construction company owned by his dying father-in-law who went deeply in debt trying to keep the firm afloat. Outwardly, Sergio is an upstanding financial advisor who knew Francesco a decade before when they were both wild college boys. Sergio learns of Francesco's plight via a helpful banker and as soon as the father-in-law dies sends Claudio (his thug) to visit the bereaved family. Saying he represents the wealthy Signora Sauro (Sergio's secret lover and accomplice) Claudio offers to make a substantial loan to Francisco who accepts. Soon Sergio is back in Francesco's life. He has set his sights on his old friend's beautiful wife Miriam and becomes obsessed with bedding her. At the same time Claudio, whom Francesco doesn't realize is in cahoots with Sergio, begins threatening him for the money. Fortunately Sergio is there to 'save' Francesco from what he doesn't realize is the inevitable destruction of his business. At least that was Sergio's plan. Unfortunately, as ruthless and shrewd as he is, he does not count on the inconsistency of his accomplices. He also underestimates his victims and that proves for him, a terrible mistake. The film is also known as Un Homme Honnete. ~ Sandra Brennan, Rovi


Awarded by
Berlin International Film Festival Ricky Tognazzi Alfred Bauer Prize 1996 Winner


Vincent Lindon
as Francesco
Sabrina Ferilli
as Miriam
Luca Zingaretti
as Sergio
Ricky Memphis
as Claudio
Lina Sastri
as Signora Sauro
Francesco Venditti
as Robertino
Lina Sastri
as Signora Sauro


Ricky Tognazzi
Mario Cecchi Gori
Vittorio Cecchi Gori
Rita Cecchi Gori
Giuseppe Manfridi
Simona Izzo
Graziano Diana
Ricky Tognazzi
Ennio Morricone
Ennio Morricone
Composer (Music Score)
Carla Simoncelli
Mariangela Capuano
Production Designer
Paola Bonucci
Costume Designer
Corrado Volpicelli
Sound/Sound Designer
Remo Ugolinelli
Sound/Sound Designer
Ferzan Ozpetek
First Assistant Director
Maurizio Pastrovich
Line Producer