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True,Ricci is a character entirely driven by class and economic need. There isn't alot else to him, although he comes alive in the pizzeria scene. True, the moviedoesn't make a point of contrasting his poverty with high-living millionaires(wealth is illustrated as the ability to buy a plate of spaghetti). But if thefilm is allowed to wait long enough--until the filmmakers are dead, untilneorealism is less an inspiration than a memory--"The Bicycle Thief"escapes from its critics and becomes, once again, a story. It is happiest thatway.
The bicycle thief essay - TruckStrong
"TheBicycle Thief," De Sica's next film, was in the same tradition, and afterthe lighthearted "Miracle in Milan" in 1951 he and Zavattini returnedto the earlier style with "," in 1952, about an old man andhis dog, forced out onto the streets. Then, in the view of most critics, DeSica put his special gift as a director on hold for many years, turning outmore light comedies ("Marriage, Italian Style," "Yesterday,Today and Tomorrow"). The two important exceptions are "TwoWomen" (1961), which won an Oscar for her portrait of ahomeless woman during the war, and ""(1971), about an Italian Jewish family that tries to ignore the gatheringclouds of doom. Both screenplays were by Zavattini.