Framed as the memory of a woman remembering her childhood during WWII, it focuses not on combat, but on the life-changing effects of war on the residents of a small village. Starring Maria Lozano as Concetta, the narrator, the film begins during the closing days of the war as Nazi troops, aware that the war is lost, take revenge on the old men women and children who remain in the towns and villages of Italy, as they continue to retreat in the face of advancing American forces. The people of Concetta's town, San Minato, try to decide whether to stay and possibly be butchered by the Nazis, or leave the area to seek out Allied troops. Although one faction, led by a wise old man, ventures out on the road, the rest, distrusting the Americans as much as they fear the Nazis, stay put. Although the death and suffering inevitably take prominence in Concetta's memories, there are surreal touches, such her fantasy that the partisans are Greek warriors. In addition, moments of lyricism, such as Galvano's awkward declaration of love for her, evoke the complex texture of war experiences.
Cannes Jury Prize 1982