La vita agra

La vita agra

Luciano Bianchi works in a CIS mine as “Head of cultural projects” and lives with his wife and son in Guastalla, a small town in the lower Padana region. When the strapped company decides to cut costs, he’s one of the first out of a job. A few days later, an accidental explosion in the mine, the result of budget cuts to security, causes the death of 34 miners. Seeking revenge, Luciano heads to Milan, determined to blow up CIS headquarters in one of the city’s skyscraper. Once there, however, he looks for work and finds a room in a boarding house. Then he meets Anna and the two move in together, with Luciano secure in the knowledge that his wife will never find out. After landing a job in advertising he becomes hugely successful and quickly scales the social ladder, to become head of CIS. Based on the eponymous novel by Luciano Bianciardi, La vita agra uses social satire to depict the parable of a small-town anarchist and intellectual who is quickly sucked in by wealth, and even becomes a hidden persuader. The film won the FIPRESCI Prize at the 1964 Karlovy Vary International Film Festival.

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