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VICTORY MARCH

Italy, 1976 (MIFF 1976)

Director: Marco Bellocchio

Marco Bellocchio's Victory March is a bitter indictment of military establishments and their training methods. The director takes up the theme of his earlier film on the warping effects that rigid institutional discipline has on individuals. Life in the barracks is contrasted with the empty private lives of the officers, who live away from the camp in town. Captain Asciutto has allowed his marriage to fall to pieces while he insists on absolute discipline within the barracks. He is particularly severe on a new recruit who has been educated in college. Meanwhile, the Captain's wife spends her idle moments drinking, compulsively stealing useless objects, and carrying on an affair with a Second Lieutenant, She becomes involved with a third soldier before she becomes disillusioned with the army. Her lovers return to their masculine world and the Captain continues in his relentless pursuit of discipline.

'Bellocchio directs his rage at the entire environment of the military establishment. He does this in the first half of the film and does it relentlessly, but with box office hindsight as he extracts the full measure of garrison tensions and violence.'

Werb, Variety

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