SKIN, THE (1981)

SKIN, THE (1981) 1


After the Allies liberate Naples in 1943, the life for the locals is not much easier, especially for women. Many sacrifice their dignity and morale to survive.


“The Skin” covers the aspect of war that I find to be the most fascinating. What do survivors do during the rebuilding period? Especially, when they were on the losing side. Some have said the film makes the Italian people look bad. Honestly, it’s just a portrayal of what any starving people would do after their national infrastructure has collapsed. Whether it would be government men working as tour guides or proper women turning to unsavory vocations.

Italy has a rich literary history about this point in time. What most Americans find off-putting is that their version of being liberating heroes is all but gone here. They aren’t seen as villains, but as more of a means to an end. Basically, the Allies led by America free Italy but leaves everyone holding the bill for the national collapse. I guess that it was a high price to pay for Mussolini getting the trains to run on time.

Burt Lancaster turns in a rather strong performance in a work of Italian cinema. It’s not “The Leopard”, but what is? That being said, a lot of newer viewers have seemed to have trouble with the fact that the prostitute women and children weren’t shown in a more honorific light. Plus, they take major issues with the American female pilot that seems to be working as an ambassador to the area. It’s true to history and I don’t know if it’s right to fault Cavani for portraying it. If anything, I’d buy the complaints that she didn’t show American aid doing enough.


[review_summary title=”Will The Skin Scratch That Itch?” summary=”Women had it rough in post WWII Naples.” positives=”Complex story
Great follow-up to Cavani’s work on The Night Porter” negatives=”Twenty minutes longer than it needed to be.”][info_box title=”Release Date” type=”regular”]
January 13th, 2015 [/info_box]

[info_box title=”Special Features include:” type=”warning”][/info_box]
[list type=”check”]
[list_item]Four featurettes, including 3 with director Liliana Cavani and one with production designer Dante Feretti.[/list_item]

[list_item] Feature-length audio commentary by critics Wade Major and Andy Klein.[/list_item]

[list_item]Original French release trailer.[/list_item]

[list_item] 2014 re-release trailer.[/list_item]

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