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Bread and Tulips
Bread and Tulips
Actors: Licia Maglietta, Bruno Ganz, Giuseppe Battiston, Antonio Catania, Marina Massironi
Director: Silvio Soldini
Genres: Indie & Art House, Comedy, Drama
PG-13     2002     1hr 54min

Left behind at a rest stop while on a tour with her family, Rosalba decides to take a vacation of her own in Venice, but soon a few days turns into something more as she makes new friends, gets a job and meets a new man. — ...  more »


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Movie Details

Actors: Licia Maglietta, Bruno Ganz, Giuseppe Battiston, Antonio Catania, Marina Massironi
Director: Silvio Soldini
Creators: Luca Bigazzi, Silvio Soldini, Carlotta Cristiani, Daniele Maggioni, Tiziana Soudani, Doriana Leondeff
Genres: Indie & Art House, Comedy, Drama
Sub-Genres: Indie & Art House, Romantic Comedies, Love & Romance
Studio: Sony Pictures
Format: DVD - Color,Widescreen,Anamorphic - Closed-captioned,Subtitled
DVD Release Date: 03/26/2002
Original Release Date: 01/01/2000
Theatrical Release Date: 01/01/2000
Release Year: 2002
Run Time: 1hr 54min
Screens: Color,Widescreen,Anamorphic
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 12
MPAA Rating: PG-13 (Parental Guidance Suggested)
Languages: Italian
Subtitles: English

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Movie Reviews

Escaping to Venice
Rebecca Johnson | Washington State | 05/12/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)

"When an Italian housewife Rosalba (Licia Maglietta) suddenly finds herself stranded, she realizes that perhaps she is not as appreciated by her family as she would like to be. All she sees is the tour bus moving off into the distance and then realizes her son has changed his phone number so she is unable to stop the bus.

When they finally call to ask where she is, she can't believe they didn't even check to see if she was on the bus before they left. Feeling adventurous and a little resentful, she decides to hitch a ride home, but ends up in Venice. With little money to spare, she manages to survive for a few days with hopes of getting a job and finding a place to stay.

After finding a job in a florist shop and moving in with a waiter named Fernando (who is just about to kill himself it seems), she meets Grazia who bursts into her life asking her to help her with a plumbing disaster.

For some reason Rosalba is swept away in this new life and keeps telling her family she will be back soon, yet something strange power seems to overtake her and she decides she too needs a vacation, albeit a working vacation. She spends her time working in the florist shop, reading books in the evening and eating breakfast prepared by Fernando. He also leaves her a note each morning, which is quite romantic even though, technically, she is just his house guest.

Once Rosalba's husband starts to notice that things are not getting done around his house, he hires Costantino (Giuseppe Battiston) as his private detective. This is when it become more of a comedy of sorts as Costantino is really a plumber who is determined to find Rosalba and return her to her husband.

An enjoyable escape that really keeps
your full attention. Licia Maglietta is
pure magic.

~The Rebecca Review"
Gail Cooke | TX, USA | 08/23/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Forget flurrying pigeons, St. Mark's, Florian's tables, all the standard fare usually delivered by films set in Venice. Silvio Soldini's deftly masterful "Bread and Tulips" is instead an ethereal Venezia, a triptych of shadows, echoes and lights that evoke a city of workers, narrow stone studded streets, mini bridges and interlocking canals. It is a place that Rosalba (Licia Maglietta) cannot resist. She is an under estimated, unappreciated middle-age housewife and mother of two teenage sons who is on a family vacation to the Adriatic coast. When Rosalba exits the ladies room during a rest stop she sees the back bumper of the tour bus as it trundles down the road without her. Her husband is Mimmo (Antonio Catania), a self-centered boor who dallies with his mistress and oversees a plumbing business in Pescara. She immediately contacts him by cell phone and is lambasted for being left behind. She agrees to wait there, but evidently ready for a vacation of her own choosing she makes her way to Venice. After her evening arrival she has dinner at a modest trattoria where she meets Fernando (Bruno Ganz), an Icelander, a despondent waiter who is prone to suicide attempts. (He keeps a noose handy). Ganz's artfully understated portrayal of Fernando is superb. When Rosalba allows that she is short on funds Fernando invites her to share his lodgings, where she is greeted each morning with a note from him as well as breakfast on a tray. Eventually, she finds work with an elderly florist and becomes friends with her neighbor, Grazia (Marina Massironi), a wide-eyed, other worldly masseuse. The emergence of Rosalba as a confident woman is a joy to watch as her eyes dance and features soften with radiant allure. When Mimmo's mistress refuses to iron his shirts, he hires Costantino (Giuseppe Battiston), an unemployed wanna be detective to track down his wife. Costantino's arrival in Venice provides some of the film's better comic moments as he searches for a hotel and Rosalba. When Costantino is able to trace Rosalba to her room, he meets Grazia and falls under her spell. Love's rocky path has more twists and turns when Costantino confesses why he really came to Venice. Apparently conscience stricken Rosalba returns to her nonchalant sons and indifferent husband. Fernando is left more mournful than ever with only a note and a bouquet of tulips. Or, is he? "Bread and Tulips" is a charming romantic comedy that leaves one sighing contentedly, hoping for a trip to Venice and maybe even breakfast on a tray."
Bread and Tulips
Janis L. Stoker | Grants Pass, OR USA | 10/01/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)

"I found this movie to be absolutely charming and left the theatre with a smile on my face. Licia Maglietta was marvelous as the 40-something lovely lady who decides to take the other fork in the road and starts a new life in Venice. Tired of being under-appreciated and verbally abused by her boorish husband and preoccupied sons, Rosalba (Licia) decides to live for herself for a change and then becomes the catalyst that magically causes others to change around her -- the suicidal landlord/restauranteer, the aging florest employer who is a former anarchist, the lady neighbor down and hall, and even the comical plumber/detective sent in pursuit by her husband. This film is funny, poignant, heart-warming, and charming. The entire cast is truly memorable; the small vignettes of Rosalba's dreams are somewhat jarring in their presentation - but once you become acclimated to their random arrival they add a bit of mystery to the film that is somewhat resolved at the end.This is a DVD that I will buy upon release for sure."
Wonderful performances make Bread and Tulips special.
Russell Fanelli | Longmeadow, MA USA | 01/17/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Bread and Tulips tells the story of a middle-aged Italian woman, Rosalba, beautifully played by Licia Maglietta, who is left stranded at a tourist stop by her husband and sons. Upset by their indifference to her, she decides to visit Venice before she goes home to a family that does not appreciate her.

Needing dinner after arriving at her pensione (bed and breakfast) she goes to a tratoria (family style restaurant) and meets Fernando, the waiter, played by the fine German actor, Bruno Ganz, whom some viewers may have seen in Wim Wenders wonderful films. Rosalba is short of cash and ends up staying with Fernando in his apartment.

Rosalba senses the loneliness and sadness in Fernando. He has a noose to hang himself hidden under his bed. She does her best to cheer him up by making his dingy apartment an attractive place to live.

Rosalba soon finds work with an eccentric florist and decides to stay with Fernando. She is a warm, attractive woman who makes life better for everyone she meets. She seems in no hurry to go home to her family.

Her husband decides to send a plumber, who has come looking for work, to Venice to find his wife. This subplot adds much humor to the story. Each of the characters has some unique quality which makes them memorable. Rosalba is so warm and friendly that everyone who meets her likes her and wants to help her. She may not be needed by her family, but she quickly becomes important to her small circle of friends in Venice.

What makes this film special is first the performances, which are first-rate. Licia Maglietta as Rosalba is wonderful. She is just the sort of person we would like to know. She is warm, friendly, genuinely interested in others, and talented. All the supporting players are drawn to her and are better for knowing her.

Bruno Ganz as Fernando is wearied by all the dashed hopes and disappointments of his life, which may have gotten the better of him had he not met Rosalba. He is the moon, dark and brooding, to Rosalba's sun.

The story is well directed and well told. Enough quirky and unusual characters come on the scene to keep our interest high. Clearly the director wants to show us Italians as they really are, not so much descendants of the Romans as a pompous tour guide suggests, but silly and flawed like the rest of us. Rosalba, a seemingly ordinary housewife, is the best of the Italians and the best is plenty good enough."