Neapolitan Carousel

  • 1953
  • Movie
  • NR
  • Drama, Musical

An Italian musical extravaganza structured after the Commedia dell'Arte, which boasts performances of ballet, opera, popular song, street dancing, and mime. The musical numbers are presented by a family of street musicians which has traveled from town-to-town performing for hundreds of years. Stoppa, patriarch of the family, pauses in his wanderings to...read more

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An Italian musical extravaganza structured after the Commedia dell'Arte, which boasts performances of ballet, opera, popular song, street dancing, and mime. The musical numbers are presented by a family of street musicians which has traveled from town-to-town performing for hundreds of

years. Stoppa, patriarch of the family, pauses in his wanderings to introduce the various set-pieces that span several centuries. Among them: "The Sailor's Lament," inspired by a Salvatore Rosi painting of the Moorish invasion; a ballet called "Naples Incarnate," which details the courting of a

young Neapolitan girl by several men dressed in costumes from different countries; the beginnings of the barter system; a tragic romance between Loren, a model for naughty postcards, and a soldier who is killed during WW I; a performance of the traditional Michelemma, the oldest known Italian

melody; the invasion of Saracens and the occupation of Naples by the French, Spanish, and Germans which is given a ballet interpretation; the dance of the tarantella; and a dance along the streets of Naples concluding the festivities. NEAPOLITAN CAROUSEL, which was released in Europe in 1953 with

a 125-minute running time, didn't find an American audience until 1961 after 11 minutes had been cut. The film was a bit of a disappointment for US audiences who had seen Loren in Vittorio De Sica's superb TWO WOMEN four months earlier, and few realized that NEAPOLITAN CAROUSEL was actually shot

eight years before, when Loren was still a rising star. Nevertheless, the film is a musical feast for the eyes and ears that offers a variety of native Italian dances, songs, and entertainment to the devotee of cultural traditions. (In Italian; English subtitles.)

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  • Rating: NR
  • Review: An Italian musical extravaganza structured after the Commedia dell'Arte, which boasts performances of ballet, opera, popular song, street dancing, and mime. The musical numbers are presented by a family of street musicians which has traveled from town-to-t… (more)

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