Bernardo Bertoluccis vast historical melodrama used the massive popular critical and financial success of its predecessor the scandalous LAST TANGO IN PARIS to mount a production of epic scale. The film utilises an all-star Hollywood cast to tell its heavily Marxist tale of Italian peasants during the twentieth century. Two boys born on the same day are destined for divergent paths Olmo (played by Gerard Depardeiu) is born to peasant parents and will become a passionate socialist while Alfredos (Robert De Niro) bourgeois landowning origins will lead him to ultimately embrace fascism. Driven by a sincere hope for and belief in political change Bertoluccis film is nonetheless made up of very humane individual stories it concentrates on highly personal experiences of a politically-charged time which colour the little dramas of love sex family and community. It is at once an epic poem and a political manifesto and it is the product of a director who was unabashedly communist in his youth. The fact that 1900 managed to get released by a major American studio during the height of the Cold War is remarkable in itself. The final sequence which portrays the Italian peasants overthrowing their fascist masters and dancing beneath the red flag of Communism sparked controversy on all sides with the left criticising it for historical inaccuracy and the right obviously inflamed by the glorification of Communism. Bertolucci himself called it a dream sequence an anticipation of the revolution yet to come and indeed the entire movie is something of a celebration of the human spirit and the will to overcome.
Creating An Epic featurette, The Story, The Cast featurette
Release Date: 30 April 2007
Certificate: 18 - Suitable for 18 years and over. Not for sale to persons under age 18, by placing an order for this product you are declaring that you are 18 years or over.
Aspect Ratio: 16:9 Wide Screen
Sound: Dolby Digital
Production Year: 1990