Director: Pier Paolo Pasolini
Year Released: 1961
Two-bit pimp and thief Accattone treats the women that make him money like garbage, ignores his offspring and spends his days hanging out with his buddies, all in a not-so-valiant bid to avoid getting real work. As a grim depiction of modern living - and the drudgery of working life - it's an extremely potent statement (you either eat or you starve), and Pasolini, still early in his filmmaking career, shows a natural handling of amateur actors: Accattone and his peers are at once loathsome and genuinely human (when he steals a necklace from his son so he can buy food, it's an unpleasant but well-observed moment). In general, Pasolini walks a thin line between creating characters who are contemptible and 'real,' and though the film is rather methodically paced (like Antonioni's work), remains compelling nonetheless.