"General Della Rovere" Is Released
General della Rovere (Italian: Il generale della Rovere) is a 1959 Italian film directed by Roberto Rossellini.
The film is based on a novel by Indro Montanelli which was in turn based on a true story.
The film tells the story of a petty thief (played by Vittorio De Sica) who is hired by the Nazis to impersonate an Italian resistance leader, General della Rovere, and inflitrate a group of resistance prisoners in a Milan prison.
With a deft guiding hand, director Roberto Rossellini brings out the depths in this study of a man's transformation during the German occupation of Milan. Based on a novel by Indro Montanelli, the story is true. Colonel Mueller (Hannes Messemer) and his cohorts have decided to plant a spy in the Milan prison. They choose a petty thief from the streets who earns his living plying the black-market trade and assign him to the task. He is thrown in jail under the false identity of General della Rovere (Vittorio De Sica) in order to bring the Italian resistance fighters among the prisoners, out into the open. As the fake general slowly makes friends with these men, he becomes a leader of sorts, and this transformation gets him thinking in a different way about himself. This well-wrought drama was given the "Best Foreign Film" award in 1960 by the New York Film Critics, and it won the Golden Lion at the 1959 Venice Film Festival. ~ Eleanor Mannikka, All Movie Guide