Three Brothers
Film poster
Directed byFrancesco Rosi
Written byTonino Guerra
Francesco Rosi
Produced byGiorgio Nocella
Antonio Macrì
StarringPhilippe Noiret
Michele Placido
CinematographyPasqualino De Santis
Edited byRuggero Mastroianni
Music byPino Daniele
Piero Piccioni
Release date
  • 15 May 1981 (1981-05-15) (France)
Running time
113 minutes

Three Brothers (Italian: Tre fratelli) is a 1981 Italian film based on a work by Andrei Platonov. It was directed by Francesco Rosi and stars Philippe Noiret, Vittorio Mezzogiorno, Michele Placido and Charles Vanel.

The film won the Boston Society of Film Critics award for Best Foreign Film, and the Nastro d'Argento for Best Director and Actor. It received a nomination for an Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film.[1] It was screened out of competition at the 1981 Cannes Film Festival.[2]


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In a farmhouse in southern Italy, an old woman, the matriarch of an Italian family, dies. Her husband, Donato, summons their three adult sons, each of whom are facing difficult personal problems, back to their farmhouse from the cities where they now live. One of their sons, Raffaele, a judge living in Rome, is considering presiding over a terrorism case for which he would risk assassination. Another son, Rocco, who lives in Naples, is religious and works as a counselor at a boys' correctional institute, so that he can fulfill his dream of helping troubled teenagers. The third son, Nicola, who lives in Turin, is a militant factory worker involved in a labour dispute, and is dealing with a failed marriage. Each of the men grieves in his own way, while also wrestling with their other emotional issues.

The sons recall the past and engage in reveries of what may come: Raffaele imagines his death, Rocco dreams of lifting the youth of Naples out of violence, drugs, and corruption, Nicola pictures embracing his estranged wife. Meanwhile, the old man and his young granddaughter, Nicola's child, explore the rhythms of the farm and grieve together.


See also


  1. ^ "The 54th Academy Awards (1982) Nominees and Winners". Retrieved 2013-06-15.
  2. ^ "Festival de Cannes: Three Brothers". Retrieved 2009-06-07.