Director: Federico Fellini
Cast: Giulietta Masina, François Périer, Amedeo Nazzari
Among the nascent high-rise apartments of Rome's periphery lives a prostitute who seems as fated to be duped by her fellow men as she is resiliently optimistic that her lot will improve.
A series of bitter and sweet disappointments culminating in a crushing betrayal of her hope and trust: not, one would think, very cheering material for a film nearly two hours long. Yet Fellini (and Rota) imbue it with such energy and beauty, and Masina's face is such a picture in itself - woman, girl and child rolled into one - that one is uplifted. In this respect its final image is a clear precursor of that of La Dolce Vita, just as the film itself picks up on the pathos and neo-realist subject matter of La Strada and I Vitelloni.