Unemployed Antonio Ricci (Lamberto Maggiorani) is elated when he finally finds work hanging posters around war-torn Rome. His wife, Maria (Lianella Carell), sells the family's bed linens to retrieve Antonio's bicycle from the pawnshop so he can take the job. However, disaster strikes when Antonio's bicycle is stolen, and his new job is doomed unless he can find the thief. With the help of his lively son, Bruno (Enzo Staiola), Antonio combs the city, growing increasingly desperate for justice.
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