Best Movies by Farr
Hands Over the City Poster
Released Runtime Category
1963 100 Drama, The Criterion Collection
Director Language
Francesco Rosi Italian
Rod Steiger, Salvo Randone, Marcello Cannavale

Hands Over the City

Watch it on:

What's it About

The rampant development of buildings and housing in Naples gets disrupted when new construction causes the collapse of an old neighboring building, wreaking death and injury on its inhabitants. The chief unscrupulous land developer, Edoardo Nottola (Steiger), had formed plans to work both sides of the street by getting himself elected a city commissioner. Will the official inquiry into the accident foil his ambitions, or get lost in the endless bureaucracy that already hobbles the city's government?

Why we love it

This raw, searing Italian feature's semi-documentary style hurls the viewer into a cauldron of greed, obfuscation and obsession, as we view up-close the morass of red tape and shady backroom dealings that supposedly characterized the inner workings of Naples at the time. Steiger, by turns oily, calculating and volcanic in the central role of Nottola, carries this outstanding, still relevant film. An unqualified triumph for director Rosi, you should definitely lay your “Hands” on this title.

BEST MOVIES BY FARR is your personal guide to great movies to rent, stream, or buy; to watch at home or on-the-go. Led by film advocate John Farr, the Best Movies by Farr team works as a "quality filter" for the discerning moviegoer. Every day, we bring you the best of the best, the fantastic familiar films and hidden gems, to answer that age-old question: "What should we watch tonight?"