Synopsis: Living in an Italian refugee camp in 1948, the beautiful Karen meets Antonio, a resident of the men's camp. While not in love with him, Karen marries him and they soon set of for his home village, Stromboli. The village is on a remote island at the foot of an active volcano. She despairs at what she finds when she arrives. The village is on barren land and virtually devoid of people as many have left, mostly for the United States. She doesn't speak the local dialect and is treated with disdain by some of the locals who see her as an exotic foreigner and a loose woman. After Antonio beats her and locks her in their house, she sets off across the mountains to seek her freedom and a better future.
Genre: Drama
Director(s): Roberto Rossellini
Production: Criterion Collection
  2 wins & 1 nomination.
Rotten Tomatoes:
81 min


"I am sought of them that asked not for me;|I am found of them that sought me not."|Isaiah 65.1

Spring 1948.|In one of the foreign refugee camps

Refugees have arrived in Italy|fleeing the war.

Will you give me your blue shirt?

Ever since they moved the soldiers

to the other side of the camp|they act like school children.

-Poor things.|They have been prisoners...

Now that they've returned|they have a right to enjoy themselves.

What the hell is she saying?

-She says our situation is worse because

we know nothing about our families and

we have no place to go.

They haven't come here for a good time either.

Well, my soldier is still looking|for his father and mother.

They were in Casino, but had to leave;|who knows where they are now?

The poor thing has gone many times|to Rome for news...

Poor boy! He's really so handsome and strong.

How I love the soldiers!

Karin... Don't you hear your boyfriend?

See you later.

-Good luck.|-I hope so.

-Hello.|-Good evening. What's new?

Its cold tonight.

-Cold?|-Yes. Cold.

Instead of a warm greeting|you're complaining of the cold?

-What do you want me to say?|-Anything but that.

-Move it! You can't stay here.|-Leave me alone.

-Don't you know the rules?|-Its obvious you all weren't

at the front...|OK, I'm going.

-You too, out of here.|-OK, Sergeant, I'm coming in a moment.

Come on girls, out of here.

You can't stay here.|Come on, out of here.

"Though they are the masters|in this hell...

"and they act like tyrants..."

You know how much I like you?|Make up your mind, yes or no.

I don't know.|What are you trying to say?

-Will you marry me or not?|Why do you laugh? I'm serious.

You're crazy! You don't even know me!

We talk a few times through the barbed wire...

-...and now you want to marry me?|-Sure.

-And if you're wrong?|-I like you, you drive me crazy.

And if later you discover|I'm not how you imagined me?

-Women need a strong hand,|I'll lock you up.

-What does that mean?|I know this, and this, and this...

-Its the hand that gives.|-Ah, you want to slap me around.

Damn fence.|Come on, make up your mind.

I can't go on wasting my time here.

If you want an answer,|come tomorrow night.

He is simple and loving. He lives|on a Mediterranean island.

-He says I am very pretty.|-Do you like him?

I can't even understand what he says.|He seems nice but...

...he is only a boy.

-What will you do?|- I don't know. What can I do?

He wants to marry. He's crazy.

Tomorrow we'll see.|Everything depends on the visa

to go to Argentina.|If they don't give it to me...

...I know what I am going to do.

Good day. Have this one come in.

OK, let her in.

Prepare her report: name, nationality,|age, parents' names and her profession.

We have good information about her.|She speaks Italian, was born in Lithuania.

Well then, have her come in.

What's your name?|-Karin Bjorsen.

-Born in...|- Kaunas, Lithuania.

-Birth date.|- May 8, 1920.

-Father's name.|-Karl Bjorsen.

-Mother's name.|-Maria Pasqualis.


The consul needs more information.|He would like to know how and why

you came to be interred here.

I lived in Czechoslovakia before the war.

I was married to an architect who died

during the German occupation.|Afterward I went to Yugoslavia.

And when it too was invaded|I escaped to Italy because...

the Gestapo were looking for me.

I entered Italy illegally|and obtained residency...

with forged documents.

After the 8th of September|I managed to escape from the German police.

But then I was sent here|by the Italian authorities.

Do you have a letter of recommendation|in order to emigrate to Argentina?

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Roberto Rossellini

Roberto Gastone Zeffiro Rossellini (8 May 1906 – 3 June 1977) was an Italian film director and screenwriter. Rossellini was one of the directors of the Italian neorealist cinema, contributing to the movement films such as the 1945 Roma città aperta (Rome, Open City). more…

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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    "Stromboli" STANDS4 LLC, 2023. Web. 5 Feb. 2023. <>.

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