The Tree of Wooden Clogs
Drama | Italian with English subtitles | 186 minutes
In Lombardy, Italy, in 1898, four peasant families struggle to survive on farms owned by an unsympathetic landlord. Living in a communal arrangement, they interact with each other: planting their crops, giving birth to children, slaughtering animals, and praying in a sparse church. When one child’s clog breaks, his father cuts down a tree on the landlord’s property and from it carves a new clog. The landlord finds out about this theft and with terrible cruelty decides to punish the father and his family.
Cast (Unprofessional Locals):
Why Stream This Film?
- Rotten Tomatoes Score (Critics Consensus): 94%
- Cannes Film Festival: Winner, Palme d’Or
- César Awards: Winner, Best Foreign Film
- David di Donatello Awards: Winner, Best Film
- National Board of Review: Winner, Top Foreign Film
- New York Film Critics Circle Awards: Winner, Best Foreign Language Film
- The New York Times placed the film on its Best 1000 Movies Ever list.
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The film has a tempo as slow as the seasons’ turn, but there is something magnificent in its utter commitment and authenticity.
Ermanno Olmi’s fine Italian film has almost nothing going for it except it may well be a masterpiece. It is a profoundly serious film that stands outside time and fashion.
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