Roberto Rossellini

Roberto Rossellini – Il Messia AKA The Messiah (1975)

Quote:
Virtually unknown outside of Italy, Messiah (Il Messia) is historically important as the last directorial effort of Roberto Rossellini. In retelling the life of Christ, Rosselini harks back to the humanistic style he’d utilized on his many Italian TV projects of the 1960s. The director has no intention of depicting Jesus as being the vessel of divine providence. The Man from Galilee is shown simply as one who is unusually moral and of spotless character — the sort of person who’d be a natural leader no matter who his Father was. Co-scripted by its director, Messiah was completed in 1975, but not given a general release until 1978. Read More »

Roberto Rossellini – Blaise Pascal (1972)

Roberto Rosselini directs this fascinating program tracing the life and work of 17th century French mathematician, religious philosopher and physicist Blaise Pascal, who made pioneering contributions to the fields of geometry and probability. The legendary Rosselini created this television film as part of a remarkable series geared toward illuminating the evolution of knowledge and history in Western civilization. Read More »

Roberto Rossellini – Cartesius (1974)

Rossellini, 1973: One makes films in order to become a better human being.
The New York Times, : Just watching Rossellini’s magnificent work may help a bit in that department as well.

In the final phase of his career, Italian master Roberto Rossellini embarked on a dramatic, daunting project: a series of television films about knowledge and history, made in an effort to teach, where contemporary media were failing. Looking at the Western world’s major figures and moments, yet focusing on the small details of daily life, Rossellini was determined not to recount history but to relive it, as it might have been, unadorned and full of the drama of the everyday. This selection of Rossellini’s history films presents The Age of the Medici, Cartesius and Blaise Pascal – works that don’t just enliven the past but illuminate the ideas that have brought us to where we are today. Read More »

Roberto Rossellini – Fear (1954)

Synopsis:
Roberto Rossellini directs his then-wife Ingrid Bergman in the suspenseful drama La Paura (Fear), based on the book by Stefan Zweig. Guilt-stricken Irene Wagner (Bergman) is forced to hide her secret affair with Erich Baumann (Kurt Kreuger) from her husband, Professor Albert Wagner (Mathias Wieman), a scientist in the midst of a serious breakthrough. However, Erich’s ex-girlfriend, Joanne (Renate Mannhardt), finds out and threatens blackmail. This throws Irene into a fit of homicidal and suicidal rage. Read More »

Roberto Rossellini – L’uomo dalla croce aka Man with a Cross (1943)

An extremely rare film by Roberto Rossellini, his third feature, made under the Fascist control of Italy. Basically rejected after the War because of the Fascist content of the film, “Rossellini produces a work which focuses upon the Italian expeditionary forces on the Eastern Front and upon a Catholic chaplain representative of Italy’s religious majority…the principal character’s humanity and sacrifice seem to prefigure the good-natured priest of Rome, Open City who works with leftist Resistance leaders…Rossellini underlines the common humanity in Fascist and Bolshevik alike” (Peter Bonadella, Italian Cinema from Neo-Realism to Present). Read More »

Roberto Rossellini – Francesco giullare di Dio aka Saint Francis, God’s Jester aka Flowers of St. Francis (1950)

The Film:
The Flowers of St. Francis is Roberto Rossellini’s answer to the despair
of the Italian neorealism he had previously been credited with initiating;
through a disconnected series of events in the story of the popular saint,
it affirms Christian beliefs at their most pure. The original Italian title
‘Francesco, giullare di Dio’ translates as “Francis, the Jester of God.”
It is even more inspirational than Pier Paolo Pasolini’s The Gospel According
to St. Matthew mainly because of the natural behavior of the characters.
. . . Glenn Erickson, Read More »

Roberto Rossellini – Atti degli apostoli aka Acts of the Apostles (1969)

from the imdb comments:

The second in a series of historical films begun by Roberto Rossellini in the late 1960’s was this sublime movie for Italian television which traces the spread of Christianity in the thirty years after the death and resurrection of Jesus, according to the accounts of Luke. Most of the first part deals with the successes and failures of Peter in spreading the good news of Jesus and presents an almost documentary view of the first Christian community, the trials before the Sanhedrin, the martyrdom of Philip and Stephen. Most of the second half of this five-hour+ film follows Paul from his conversion en route to Damascus, his work with Barnabas in Antioch of Syria, his debates on the old law versus the new, his arrest. The film ends with his imprisonment in Rome. Read More »