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Bread, Love and Dreams 
Written by: on February 16th, 2009

Theatrical Release Date: Italy, 1953
Director: Luigi Comencini
Writers: Luigi Comencini, Ettore Maria Margadonna
Cast: Vittorio De Sica, Gina Lollobrigida, Marisa Merlini, Virgilio Riento, Tina Pica, Maria-Pia Casilio, Roberto Risso, Memmo Carotenuto, Vittoria Crispo, Guglielmo Barnabò

DVD released: January 27th, 2009
Approximate running time: 93 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1 Full Frame
Rating: NR
Sound: Dolby Digital Mono English, Dolby Digital Mono Italian
Subtitles: N/A
DVD Release: Mya Communication
Region Coding: Region 0 NTSC
Retail Price: $24.95

Bread, Love and Dreams is a romantic comedy that centers around two main characters. A young woman named Maria who all the men in her village call her “frisky” and the other man character is the town’s new marshal named Antonio. Maria is an object of desire for all the men in town while all the women loathe her because of the attention she garners from the men. Her nickname “Frisky” was given to her because the men in town think that she is easy, even though she is still pure. Maria becomes smitten by when she falls head over heels for one of the men who works for the new marshal. The film’s other romantic pairing involves the marshal and a mid wife who has a secret that threatens to keep them apart. To complicate matter even further the marshal also becomes infatuated with Maria. The intertwining story lines are easy enough to follow and the plot moves along rapidly.

Bread, Love and Dreams was co-written and directed by Luigi Comencini who’s other notable films include Bebo’s Girl and Ship of Condemned Women. Luigi Comencini also directed a sequel to Bread, Love and Dreams titled Bread, Love and Jealousy. The screenplay for Bread, Love and Dreams was nominated for an academy award.

The film is very character driven and the performances of its two leads Gina Lollobrigida in the role of Maria “Frisky” and Vittorio De Sica in the role of the marshal carry the whole production. Gina Lollobrigida is infectious as the free spirited Maria. Some of Gina Lollobrigida other notable performances include Death Laid an Egg and Bad Man’s River. The most surprising part of this film is without a doubt Vittorio De Sica’s performance as the marshal. Even though Vittorio De Sica is most remembered for directing film’s like Two Women, Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow, Marriage Italian-Style and the “La riffa” segment in Boccaccio ’70. He has also appeared in over one hundred and fifty films as an actor. Ultimately Bread, Love and Dreams is an enchanting character driven comedy that never gets to overly sentimental.

The DVD:

Bread, Love and Dreams is presented in its original 1.33:1 full frame aspect ratio. This transfer has been flagged for progressive playback. The image looks clean, details are crisp throughout and contrast and black levels fare well.

This release comes with two audio options English and Italian. Both audio mixes are presented in a Dolby Digital mono. Both audio mixes sound evenly balanced and they are free of any audio defects. There are no English subtitles.

Extras for this release include a photo gallery with eighteen images (stills, poster and lobby cards). Overall Bread, Love and Dreams, is another good DVD release from Mya Communication.

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