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Department of

Languages and Literatures

Film italiani - Primavera 2014
little boy looking at a film strip

Appuntamento al cinema! Everyone is welcome!

Click on the title to watch the trailer.

 

On campus

Contact: Loredana Di Martino (ldm@sandiego.edu | 260-3746 | Founders 144-A)
All films have English subtitles.


3 marzo | 6-8 p.m. | Kroc IPJ 219

I cento passi (the hundred steps)


"I cento passi" (one hundred steps) was the distance between the Impastatos' house and the house of Tano Badalamenti, an important Mafia boss, in the small Sicilian town of Cinisi. The movie is the story of Peppino Impastato, a young left-wing activist that in the late seventies (when almost nobody dared to speak about Mafia, and several politicians maintained that Mafia did not even exist) repeatedly denounced Badalamenti crimes and the whole Mafia system using a small local radio station, with the arm of irony. In 1978 Peppino (30 years old) was killed by an explosion. The police archived the case as an accident or a suicide, but his friends never accepted this thesis. Note: This is a true story. More than wenty years after Peppino's death, the case has been re-opened. Tano Badalamenti, meanwhile, has been convicted in USA for drug traffic. —Written by Pasquale Foggia

27 marzo | 12:15-2:15 | Kroc IPJ 219

pane e tulipani (bread and tulips)


While on vacation with her family in northern Italy, Rosalba gets left behind at a rest stop. When her husband finally notices that she is missing, he orders her to stay put while he makes his way back to her. She doesn't. Instead she decides to hitchhike home. But changes her plans in favor of visiting Venice on her own. Rosalba finds accommodation at the apartment of a local waiter and finds a job at a flower shop. Meanwhile, her husband hires a private detective to find her. As the detective begins his search in Venice, Rosalba and the waiter Fernando begin to come closer in a mutual attraction that neither expects or fights. Rosalba is about to discover a whole new life that she has missed and it's just a question of which life she will choose. Excerpt from www.michaeldvd.com.au/Reviews

11 aprile | 2:30-4:30 | Kroc IPJ 219

le fate ignoranti (his secret life)


AIDS doctor Antonia's husband is killed by a car. She gets depressed until she learns he had been cheating on her with a man. Following her newly born curiosity for life, she goes to see her husband's lover, Michele, and finds a huge apartment that he shares with gay and transgendered friends, including a Turkish immigrant and a prostitute. Antonia is reluctant to tell these people of her relationship to the dead man, but needs prompting to move on to a new phase of her life. —Written by Sujit R. Varma

6 maggio | 12:15-2:15 | Kroc IPJ 218

terraferma


A man is put in jeopardy when he's forced to help a family with nowhere to turn. Ernesto is an elderly fisherman who lives on the Sicilian island of Linosa. The fishing business has gone into a slump and many on the island have either opened businesses catering to tourists or moved elsewhere, though his 20-year-old grandson Filippo works with him over the objection of his more pragmatic mother. Political and economic unrest in North Africa has caused a growing number of people to flee the country in hopes of relocating in Europe, and the Sicilian government has firmly warned sailors not to pick up Africans attempting to enter the country illegally by boat. When Ernesto sees a young man and his pregnant mother drowning after fleeing a small boat, his conscience forces him to rescue them, and when the woman gives birth not long after they reach shore, the old man and his family become unwitting criminals as they give the immigrant family a place to stay.  Written by Mark Deming, Rovi

 

Off campus

30 gennaio

Scialla! (Easy!)


Where: Balboa Park: Museum of Photographic Arts
Time: 7:30 p.m.
Cost: $10 at the door; $8 with student ID
Contact: (619) 238-7559 | info@mopa.org

The comic and tender heart of this film beats loud and clear through the serious story it tells. In a subtle way it says a lot about life, about relationships, about appearances and about today’s incredible changes in the structure of Italian life and the Italian family. And it does so with a beautifully sequenced script that keeps a smile on the viewer’s face and stimulates much rueful laughter.

Bruno Beltrame’s life has not turned out the way he expected.  He has given up his hopes of being a writer and his career as a high school teacher.  Now he ekes out a living as a ghostwriter for celebrities, his current client a porn star, and as a tutor for liceo students.

A student’s mother asks him to care for her son, Luca, a boy in a hoodie, who cares much more about his “street cred” (credibiltá di strada) than his studies.  Bruno refuses. The woman, desperate for an opportunity in a life that has hit a wall, reveals herself as an old love and Luca as his son.  For what takes place next, the question is – who teaches what to whom?

13 febbraio

Ex (Many kisses later)


Where: Encinitas, La Paloma Theatre MAP
Time: 7 p.m.
Cost: $10 at the door; $8 with student ID
Contact: (760) 436-SHOW

The 2009 Italian box office champion from Fausto Brizzi, is a brisk romantic comedy about that crazy little thing called love. It does indeed begin with declarations of love and plenty of kisses, but the question is raised: does love go on?

The film follows six couples between Christmas and Valentine’s Day in episodes that intertwine and revolve around the end of a love affair and the ways former lovers can shape our lives. Exes are like the Phoenix rising from the ashes… not dead but rather lying in wait.  ‘Many Kisses Later’ offers illustrations of relationships that have turned into hatred, into friendship, and ones where the flame of love still burns.  Some lovers have lost sight of each other by choice, others by a bizarre twist of fate, others by mistake. But the film’s message is clear: exes remain a part of our lives and who we are, for better or worse, is at least in part due to them.

13 marzo

cesare deve morire (caesar must die)


Where: Encinitas, La Paloma Theatre MAP
Time: 7 p.m.
Cost: $10 at the door; $8 with student ID
Contact: (760) 436-SHOW

Every year in the high-security wing at Rome’s Rebibbia prison, professional actors and directors create moving theater with murderers, Mafia capos and other hardened criminals as their actors. This year, well-known theater director Fabio Cavalli is putting on Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar, a story of over-reaching ambition, betrayal, and brotherhood – not unlike the environment many of his “actors” come from. Cavalli puts the prisoners, many serving life terms, through their paces, and they grow into their parts, transformed by the experience and the surprising relevance of ancient Rome to their lives today in a Roman prison.

As the various scenes are rehearsed throughout the prison, the prisoners reacquire a humanity and identity as they strive to inhabit their roles.  Caesar Must Die is a striking film that blends documentary with scripted narration so well it is hard to tell where one ends and the other begins. Directed by the famed Taviani Brothers (Padre, padrone; Night of the Shooting Stars), the film is shot on location in Rebibbia Prison, primarily in stunning black and white, a nod to their early days in Italian neo-realism, encompassing many of the same themes: the common man versus the State, moral consequences and issues of class and regionalism.

Although Caesar must die, it is the film itself that delivers a poignant, unexpected lesson about life.

20 marzo

Mine vaganti

 

Where: Balboa Park: Museum of Photographic Arts
Time: 7:30 p.m.
Cost: $10 at the door; $8 with student ID
Contact: (619) 238-7559 | info@mopa.org

Tommaso is the youngest son of the Cantones, a large, traditional southern Italian family operating a pasta-making business since the 1960s. On a trip home from Rome, where he studies literature and lives with his boyfriend, Tommaso decides to tell his parents the truth about himself. But when he is finally ready to come out in front of the entire family, his older brother Antonio ruins his plans. (from rottentomatoes.com)

10 aprile

Scialla! (Easy!)


Where: Encinitas, La Paloma Theatre MAP
Time: 7 p.m.
Cost: $10 at the door; $8 with student ID
Contact: (760) 436-SHOW

The comic and tender heart of this film beats loud and clear through the serious story it tells. In a subtle way it says a lot about life, about relationships, about appearances and about today’s incredible changes in the structure of Italian life and the Italian family. And it does so with a beautifully sequenced script that keeps a smile on the viewer’s face and stimulates much rueful laughter.

Bruno Beltrame’s life has not turned out the way he expected.  He has given up his hopes of being a writer and his career as a high school teacher.  Now he ekes out a living as a ghostwriter for celebrities, his current client a porn star, and as a tutor for liceo students.

A student’s mother asks him to care for her son, Luca, a boy in a hoodie, who cares much more about his “street cred” (credibiltá di strada) than his studies.  Bruno refuses. The woman, desperate for an opportunity in a life that has hit a wall, reveals herself as an old love and Luca as his son.  For what takes place next, the question is – who teaches what to whom?

08 maggio

benvenuto presidente


Where: Encinitas, La Paloma Theatre MAP
Time: 7 p.m.
Cost: $10 at the door; $8 with student ID
Contact: (760) 436-SHOW

This is an affable film with a strong message about Italian politics and civic responsibility told with heart and humor.

Through a series of missteps and coincidences, Giuseppe Garibaldi, the local librarian and fisherman from a small mountain village, has been elected president of Italy. Having agreed to renounce the post, he changes his mind once he sees how things really operate. He is an “everyman” thrust into a powerful position, making changes he has only dreamed of.

Benvenuto, Presidente is a hilarious combination of Mr. Smith Goes to Washington meets the Keystone cops with an homage to anarchy and Janis Joplin. A new comedy by Riccardo Milani, the film unmasks corruption in the Italian government and offers the country an education in personal responsibility. The film calls the citizens of Italy to civic accountability through the metaphor of an ordinary man forced to grapple with the difficult and overwhelming task of being a responsible citizen.