La Commare Secca
Facts and Figures
Contactmusic.com: 3 / 5
La Commare Secca Movie Review
Secca is awfully rough around the edges, and viewers more accustomed to polished work like Last Tango in Paris and The Dreamers are going to have a tough time reconciling it with Bertolucci's early attempt here.
The story starts with a dead Italian prostitute. How she got that way is up for debate, as a series of characters narrates what he saw, and we witness it all in flashback. Eventually the truth (or an approximation of it) is revealed as the killer comes to light.
But while Italian cinema is historically full of passion, Secca is strangely lacking, despite its salacious premise. The prostitute (when seen alive) is hateful to the point where we root for someone to kill her. The men seem to be cardboard cut-outs with minimal emotion. Even the eventual murderer comes across as a soulless goon.
For Bertolucci fanatics, Secca will probably hold some appeal in showing off the early work of the filmmaker. (And, as it was co-written by mentor Pier Paolo Pasolini, it also indicates how a life of priviledge can ease you into the profession of movie director.) The rest of the world will do just as well skipping ahead to some of his more fully-realized work.
Aka The Grim Reaper.