Bicycle Thieves (1948)
Director: Vittorio De Sica
Stars: Lamberto Maggiorani, Enzo Staiola, Lianella Carell
The Kid With a Bike gathers some of its power from Vittorio De Sica's neo-realist masterpiece Bicycle Thieves. It was with this film about poverty and desperation that the bicycle became a potent symbol within cinema.
It's 1948 and Antonio Ricci needs work badly to support his family. Maria, Antonio's wife, pawns her dowry sheets to get her husband a bicycle so that he can take a job posting ads around Rome. The theft of the bicycle on Antonio's first day of work sets the stage for one of cinema's most moving portraits of humanity kicked to the curb and exhausted. From the film's release onward, the bike would become a powerful image in cinema, forever associated with the vitality of De Sica's classic.