I rented "The Bicycle Thief" from the library today.
Shot in 1948, it is the story of Antonio Ricci. After being unemployed for over two years, Antonio is overjoyed when he's finally given a job putting up posters. There's a catch, though, he needs a bicycle as a requirement of the job, so he pawns the family linen to get his bicycle out of hock. He goes off to his first day's work, truly happy for the first time in years, and the title of the film gives away what happens next.
I found the anticipation of the impending theft quite satisfying. With a title like "The bicycle Thief", you expect the bike to be stolen at any moment. You watch as people walk by and look at the bicycle. You can't help but hope that this person walking by is the one who's going to grab it an make a dash for it.
As much as I liked this movie, there are drawbacks to it. First, it's old, 55 years. In that time, audiences have come to expect a lot from a movie. That being said, this movie is not nearly as bad as a lot of other movies made in first half of the last century, or even made this year. Second it's in Italian, but don't worry it has subtitles. If you don't like subtitles, don't worry the movie has also been dubbed into English.
If you can get it from the library, and you like independant or old movies, this may be for you.
If you think Conan the Barbarian was cinema gold, you probably won't like this movie and you're also an idiot.