Starring: Sophia Loren, Marcello Mastroianni, Aldo Giuffrè
Director: Vittorio De Sica
Running Time: 119 mins
Yesterday, Today And Tomorrow (Ieri, oggi, domani) is an Italian film about three different women and the men they attract, and the impact that their relationships have on their lives.
This is an entertaining and interesting collection of romantic comedy stories. From the expert director Vittorio De Sica, this is definitely well-made and engaging, and the strong performances by Sophia Loren and Marcello Mastroianni are impressive all the same, making for two hours of decent fun and intrigue.
Let’s start with those performances. Loren is the main focus in all three stories, playing three very different women in completely different situations. Her brilliance in this is that she manages to expertly disappear into each and every character, and despite their extreme differences, her continual presence means that you can relate them together and have some sort of continuity through the film.
Marcello Mastroianni plays the secondary character in all of the stories. However, that doesn’t mean that he’s not fantastic, again playing three totally different men in each part, ranging from the awkward to the suave. What’s most impressive to see is that he also holds his own against Sophia Loren’s louder characters, putting in just as important a role as her in the continuity of the story throughout the entire film.
That’s one of the expert decisions of Vittorio De Sica, to keep a subtle continuity through all three stories. It’s all about relationships both romantic and not, and it’s just as intriguing to follow that all the way through as to look at the individual happenings of the short stories.
In terms of the stories themselves, they’re on the whole decent, but not brilliant. This isn’t as funny or melodramatic a film as Marriage Italian Style, but each story does have its positives. The first part, about a poor woman in Naples is probably the best, being both farcical as well as clever. The second, following a woman and her lover in a car, isn’t so entertaining or impressive, and it’s also a bit on the short side.
The final story is about a prostitute in her apartment, and it’s the most intelligent and intriguing part of the film. It looks not only at her relationship with a man, but also the unlikely bond she forms with her disapproving next door neighbours, which is fascinating to watch unfold.
Overall, this gets a 7.3 from me, because despite not being a hugely enthralling or hilarious film, it’s still intelligent and interesting enough to keep you engaged throughout its stories.