Franco Zeffirelli

  • Franco Zeffirelli – I Pagliacci (1982)

    Franco Zeffirelli1981-1990ItalyMusicalPerformance

    The story is set in southern Italy and recounts the tragedy of Canio, the lead clown in a commedia dell’arte troupe, his wife Nedda, and her lover, Silvio.Read More »

  • Franco Zeffirelli – Tea with Mussolini (1999)

    Franco Zeffirelli1991-2000DramaItalyWar
    Un tè con Mussolini (1999)
    Un tè con Mussolini (1999)

    Starring Dame Maggie Smith, Dame Judi Dench, Dame Joan Plowright, Cher, Lily Tomlin, Paolo Seganti.

    From IMDB:
    Semi-autobiographical tale from the early life of director Franco Zeffirelli looks at the illegitimate son (Charlie Lucas as a child, Baird Wallace as the teen) of an Italian businessman. The boy’s mother has died, and he is raised by an Englishwoman (Joan Plowright) in pre-WWII Fascist Italy. Living to each other in Florence, and presided over by an ambassador’s widow (Maggie Smith), a group of Englishwomen live a sheltered existence which they believe is guaranteed personal protection in a tea reception given by Il Duce. However, as war breaks out, the women are interned. Occasionally in this English colony is a wealthy American (Cher), who visits among her travels and marriages to wealthy older men.Read More »

  • Franco Zeffirelli – Hamlet (1990)

    1981-1990ClassicsDramaFranco ZeffirelliUSAWilliam Shakespeare
    Hamlet (1990)
    Hamlet (1990)

    Hamlet, Prince of Denmark, finds out that his uncle Claudius killed his father to obtain the throne, and plans revenge.Read More »

  • Franco Zeffirelli – Otello AKA Othello (1986)

    1981-1990Franco ZeffirelliItalyMysteryRomance

    Based on Shakesphere’s play, Verdi’s opera depicts the devastating effects of jealousy, “…the green-eyed monster which doth mock the meat it feeds upon”. Believing Otello has promoted the fast-rising Cassio over himself, Iago plots to destroy both Cassio and Otello. Iago convinces the jealous Otello that his beautiful wife Desdemona is unfaithful, and that Cassio is her lover. Jealousy is followed by tragedy, then retribution, “Has Heaven no more thunderbolts?”Read More »

  • Franco Zeffirelli – Jesus of Nazareth (1977)

    Drama1971-1980EpicFranco ZeffirelliItaly

    From awarded director Franco Zefirelli has been brought to screen this wonderful depiction of the greatest story ever to be told: the life of Jesus Of Nazareth, God became man. The One who came to earth to feed our faith; from the annunciation of archangel Gabriel to holy Mary, until the crucifixion of Jesus Christ, this narration reminds us of the greatness of a men who changed the world and granted light to mankind, light that presently lights up all of its pathways.Read More »

  • Franco Zeffirelli – Romeo and Juliet (1968)

    1981-1990DramaFranco ZeffirelliRomanceUnited KingdomWilliam Shakespeare

    Emulating Renato Castellani, who had previously in 1960 filmed Romeo and Juliet on location in an Italian hill city, Franco Zeffirelli, veteran stage and opera director, combined the neo-realism of Italian cinema with the unabashed sentimentality of a Puccini opera in making this enormously popular adaptation of Shakespeare’s tragedies of young lovers. Moreover he filtered the action through the lens of Leonard Bernstein’s West Side Story to make the experience totally palatable to the rebellious youth of the late Sixties. What he sacrificed in Shakespeare’s language (and perhaps half or more of the text disappeared), he attempted to compensate for with a colorful and visually appealing panorama of life in a northern Italian city. Read More »

  • Franco Zeffirelli – The Taming of the Shrew (1967)

    1961-1970ArthouseFranco ZeffirelliItalyMusicalWilliam Shakespeare


    Liz and Dick (a.k.a. Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton) almost seemed to be importing the psychodramas of their marriage into this 1967 film (of course, the same was true of every film they made together). Adapted from Shakespeare’s play and directed by Franco Zeffirelli (Romeo and Juliet) with his usual eye for sumptuousness, this version of Taming features a particularly boisterous, bawdy, fun performance by its stars. Composer Nino Rota–best known for scoring several of Fellini’s best-known works–received a National Board of Reviews award for his vivid soundtrack. –Tom KeoghRead More »

  • Franco Zeffirelli – Storia di una capinera aka Sparrow (1993)

    Drama1991-2000Franco ZeffirelliItalyRomance


    Set in 1854 in the Sicilian town of Catania, the story follows beautiful young Maria who is freed from a convent when the town is evacuated after 12 years of forced seclusion by her evil stepmother. She finds love in the form of Nino, a family friend, but eventually she must return to the convent…Read More »

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