Accattone (1961)

Accattone (1961)

“Damn all women. They take you up to heaven, and then they drop you.”

After the sole prostitute (Silvana Corsini) of a low-rent gigolo (Franco Citti) is sent to prison, “Accattone” (Citti) falls for a poor but beautiful young woman (Franca Pasut) who he ends up caring for.

Genres, Themes, Actors, and Directors:

  • Italian Films
  • Pier Paolo Pasolini Films
  • Prostitutes and Gigolos

Pier Paolo Pasolini’s debut film as a director was this relentlessly bleak look at life on the periphery of society, starting with the senseless assault of Corsini by Accattone’s group of thuggish friends:

… and leading into more details of their collectively aimless existence, which consists of a resistance to work, an inability to care for offspring, and an overall air of pugnacious rebellion. (“Give me a gun and there’d be nobody left standing.”)

When Accattone falls for Pasut, we vacillate between believing he’ll instantly exploit her, and wondering if she may be the woman who finally turns him “straight”.

Regardless, there’s very little here to give one much hope about the state of post-war Italy and its poverty-stricken inhabitants.

Notable Performances, Qualities, and Moments:

  • Fine direction by Pasoloni

Must See?
No, but it’s worth a look as Pasolini’s confident debut film.


One thought on “Accattone (1961)

  1. First viewing. Agreed, not must-see. The film appears to have good standing in Italian cinema history, but I don’t think it’s particularly unique. Still, those unfamiliar with Pasolini’s work may like to know that this film is more accessible than a good number of his subsequent films.

Leave a Reply