This film, "Fists in the Pocket", is virtually forgotten here in the U.S., but is a huge cult classic in Italy. The reasons for this are that it's never really been available here on video. And ,it was so ahead of its time that it shocked audiences when it first came out. However, even though it's forgotten, it is an excellent film.
It concerns a strange bourgouise family living in a rural villa together. There is the "normal" but self absorbed oldest brother, a blind mother, a VERY weird middle brother (a brilliant Leo Castel), a manipulative sister, and a retarded youngest brother. In lieu of a (absent) father, the oldest brother is the patriarch of this eccentric clan, and somewhat tied down by it. The weirdo middle brother, Allesandro (Castel), is a hell-bent, anarchal/suicidal/homocidal maniac with epilepsy who decides to rub out the whole family, including himself, to "free" the older brother he claims to admire so much. Thus begins a disturbing, frenzied journey by him to kill his other family members.
As dark as it sounds, which it is, it's also quite darkly humorous at times, as well. It's also easy to see why it was controversial in 1965: there are murders, hints of incest, sacriligious blasphemies, the two oldest brothers sleep with street walking prostitutes ( who are a constant presence in the film), there are eplileptic seizures shown, etc.. Basically, it has all the elements that would've gotten you condemned by the Catholic church at that time.
Director Marco Bellochio made a stunning debut with this film, and it is reminiscent of the early works of Pasolini, Bertolucci, and other Italian new wavers of the time. Definitely worth seeing.
The Criterion Collection has done a wonderful, as usual, job here. The print is sterling, the sound perfect, and there is a great retrospective piece with interviews by Bellochio and Leo Castel (who reminds me of Brando). And there is a wonderful afterword by Bernardo Bertolucci. I do highly recommend this one.