Roberto Rossellini

  • Roberto Rossellini – La macchina ammazzacattivi (1952) (DVD)

    1951-1960ArthouseComedyFilm BlancItalyRoberto Rossellini

    Jonathan Rosenbaum, Chicago Reader wrote:
    This rarely shown early film by Roberto Rossellini (1948), one of his few comedies, anticipates with remarkable prescience the conceits of Godard and others about photography in the 60s. A professional small-town photographer finds that he has the power to kill his subjects by taking their picture, turning them into statues of themselves. Rossellini left this project before it was finished, and it was edited and released a few years later without his approval–but it still comes across as a remarkably suggestive fable.Read More »

  • Roberto Rossellini – Socrate AKA Socrates French (1971)

    1971-1980ItalyPhilosophyPhilosophy on ScreenRoberto RosselliniTV

    A false accusation leads the philosopher Socrates to trial and condemnation in 4th century BC Athens.

    It was filmed in Spain with French actors in the principal roles — including Socrates and his wife Xanthippe. These actors spoke French during the shooting and dubbed themselves afterward. It is therefore much more authentic than the Italian dubbing currently available, and reveals a far more intelligent Socrates.Read More »

  • Renzo Rossellini & Roberto Rossellini – L’età del ferro AKA L’âge de fer AKA The Iron Age [French version] (1965)

    Renzo Rossellini1961-1970DocumentaryItalyRoberto RosselliniTV

    Peter Brunette wrote:
    At the time of India , as we saw, Rossellini was not really very interested in the medium of television, and the episodes broadcast were little more than outtakes from the later theatrical version. By 1964, however, when Rossellini had begun to take television more seriously, he had learned many things. One of them was that the commentary should add something to the images rather than try to replicate them verbally, as it had in the television series on India. In L’età del ferro (The Iron Age), therefore, the director appears on-screen, acting overtly as teacher and serving as a guarantor of the images, as it were, rather than as their competitor.Read More »

  • Roberto Rossellini – Santa Brigida (1951)

    Roberto Rossellini1951-1960ItalyShort Film

    Approximately ten minutes of 35mm footage survives at the Svenska Filmminstitutet from a documentary (probably not completed or even edited) shot in the convent of the Swedish sisters of Saint Brigid, Rome, at the request of the Swedish Red Cross, for victims of the Polesine flood of November 1951.Read More »

  • Renzo Rossellini & Roberto Rossellini – La lotta dell’uomo per la sua sopravvivenza aka Man’s struggle for survival (1970)

    Roberto Rossellini1961-1970DocumentaryItalyRenzo RosselliniTV

    For three years Rossellini and his son worked on a twelve-part series for Italian television about man’s search for food and the subsequent development of civilization.

    sense of cinema wrote:
    In 1963 Roberto Rossellini called a press conference and announced: “Il cinema è morto.” “Cinema is dead.”

    Rossellini had lost confidence. For four years he refused to direct. He was through with art. Civilisation was collapsing from infantilism; film’s urgent task was to show the masses the map of human achievement. He marketed himself as a purveyor of educational materials. Cynics laughed as Rossellini begged funds from a steel company, Italsider, so that his son Renzo could direct the 4.5-hour The Iron Age (1964), and then convinced Jean Riboud and John de Menil to come up with $500,000 from Schlumberger, IBM, Gulf, and UpJohn so that Renzo could direct the 12-hour Italian-French-Egyptian-Roumanian Man’s Struggle for Survival celebrating the conquest of nature.Read More »

  • Roberto Rossellini – Il Messia AKA The Messiah (1975)

    1971-1980ArthouseEpicItalian Neo-RealismItalyRoberto Rossellini

    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)

    1971-1980DramaItalyPhilosophy on ScreenRoberto Rossellini

    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)

    1971-1980ClassicsDramaItalyPhilosophy on ScreenRoberto Rossellini

    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)

    1951-1960DramaItalyRoberto RosselliniThriller

    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 »

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