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Directed by Pier Paolo Pasolini • 1962 • Italy
Starring Anna Magnani, Ettore Garofolo, Franco Citti
Anna Magnani is Mamma Roma, a middle-aged prostitute who attempts to extricate herself from her sordid past for the sake of her son. Highlighting director Pier Paolo Pasolini’s lifelong fascination with the marginalized and dispossessed, MAMMA ROMA offers an unflinching, neorealistic look at the struggle for survival in postwar Italy. Though initially banned in the country for obscenity, today the film remains a classic, featuring a powerhouse performance by one of cinema’s greatest actors and offering a glimpse at Pasolini in the process of finding his style.