Two Women (La Ciociara)


(out of 5)

 gives an excellent performance in this Vittorio de Sica melodrama, the only foreign-language film performance to win an acting Oscar until Robert De Niro in 1974 for The Godfather Part II. She plays a single mother who decides to flee the bombs that are tearing Rome apart and take her daughter to safety in her home village. The journey there leads to danger and a breakdown on the mother’s part when both she and her daughter are raped by Allied soldiers hiding in a church that they pass. Eventually, Loren finds herself attracting a proper gentleman (), but it’s not entirely certain that her sense of self-protection will allow her to accept his benign advances. The film is mostly memorable for its performances and for the shocking quality of its story, not among De Sica’s best work but a testament to Loren’s talent.

Compagnia Cinematografica Champion, Cocinor, Les Films Marceau, Société Générale de Cinématographie

Italy/France, 1960

Directed by

Adaptation and Screenplay by , based on the novel by 

Cinematography by 

Produced by

Music by

Production Design by

Costume Design by

Film Editing by

Film Festivals:  Cannes 1961

Academy Award
Best Actress (Sophia Loren as “Cesira”)

Golden Globe Award
Best Foreign-Language Foreign Film (Italy)

New York Film Critics Award
Best Actress (Sophia Loren)

Best Foreign Language Film

National Board Of Review Award
Top Five Foreign Films

Cannes Film Festival Award
Best Actress (Sophia Loren)

British Academy Award
Best Foreign Actress (Sophia Loren)



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