Tag Archives: Italian

Fernando Cerchio – Totò e Cleopatra (1963)

PLOT SYNOPSIS:
Returning from Egypt where he was bewitched by Cleopatra, Mark Antony is sequestrated by his wife, who sends a double (Totonno, a slave trader) to the Pyramids. Read More »

Francesco Rosi – Cadaveri eccellenti AKA Illustrious Corpses [24fps PAL restore] (1976)

Plot (minor spoilers):
The film starts with the murder of Investigating Judge Vargas in Palermo, amongst a climate of demonstrations, strikes and political tension between the Left and the Christian Democratic government. The subsequent investigation failing, the police assign to the case Inspector Rogas (Lino Ventura), who has firm faith in the integrity of the judiciary. While he is starting his investigation, two further judges are killed. All victims turn out to have worked together on several cases. After Rogas discovers evidence of corruption surrounding the three government officials, he is encouraged by superiors nonetheless to trail the “crazy lunatic” who is murdering the judges. Rogas seeks three men who had been wrongfully convicted by the murdered judges. He is joined by a journalist friend working for a far-left newspaper. Read More »

Alessandro Comodin – L’estate di Giacomo AKA Summer of Giacomo (2011)

Summer in the north Italian countryside. Giacomo, a deaf teenager of 19, goes to the river with his best friend Stefania for a picnic. Straying from their usual route, they end up getting lost and arrive at a place that is like a little paradise where they are free to be themselves. Over an afternoon, their childhood games take on sensual overtones until they realize that what is happening is no more than the bittersweet memory of an era that is already long lost in the past. – Read More »

Mario Monicelli – Caro Michele (1976)

Michael is the younger son of a middle-class family, a strong-willed and free-thinking fellow, who is off in some distant country fighting for a revolutionary cause. Everyone in the family writes to him, describing the events of their lives, as they drift into a kind of conventionality which would perhaps have horrified them earlier. Only Michael’s girlfriend Mara (Mariangela Melato), the mother of his child, retains her independence, even though it is through the help of Michael’s increasingly conventional friends and family that she survives. (allmovie) Read More »

Emma Dante – Via Castellana Bandiera AKA A Street in Palermo (2013)

Shut inside their cars, two women face off in a silent duel that is fought out in the intimate violence of their stares. A wholly female duel punctuated by the refusal to drink, eat and sleep; more obstinate than the sun of Palermo and more stubborn than the ferocity of the men who surround them. For, as in every duel, it is a question of life or death… It’s a Sunday afternoon. The sirocco is blowing pitilessly in Palermo when Rosa and Clara lose their way in the streets of the city and end up in a sort of alley: Via Castellana Bandiera. Read More »

Vittorio De Sica – Ladri di biciclette AKA Bicycle Thieves (1948)

Quote:

A crowd forms in front of a government employment agency, as it does every day, waiting – often in vain – for job announcements. Antonio Ricci (Lamberto Maggiorani), one of the unemployed laborers who participates in this daily ritual, is selected to hang posters in the city, a job requiring a bicycle, which he has long sold in order to sustain his family’s meager existence for a few more days. He and his wife, Maria (Lianella Carell), return to the pawn shop with a few remaining possessions, their matrimonial linen, in order to redeem the bicycle. During his first day at his new work, his bicycle is stolen. He combs the city with his young son, Bruno (Enzo Staiola), in search of the elusive bicycle. Read More »

Marco Ferreri – La Casa del sorriso aka The House of Smiles (1988)

Synopsis
In the hippie era, the motto used to be “never trust anyone over 30.” In this geriatric romance, the motto might be amended to read “never trust anyone under 60.” Still sprightly and interested in life though they are in their 70s, the two lovers in this film are confined in an unsympathetic “rest home” by their relatives and are only able to meet rarely in a camper loaned to them by some black immigrant workers. When the staff at the home get wind of their affair, they take vigorous action to try and “calm them down” simply to reassert their deadening control over them. Eventually the two of them end their romance, but the woman escapes the rest home and finds freedom in the company of the immigrants.
~ Clarke Fountain, All Movie Guide Read More »