The 2018-19 Italian Film season has now finished

Italian flagDear students and staff,

We regret to inform you that due to heavy academic workload for our students for whom the films have been arranged, it has been decided to cancel the two last screenings of our Italy through its films.

Therefore the screening of La Vita è bella on 11th March and Perfetti sconosciuti on 25th March will not go ahead. Students and staff will be able to borrow both DVDs from Avenue library and watch them in their own time if they wish to.

We apologise for any disappointment but we are sure that you understand that these events are dictated by educational priorities linked to modules and in this particular case we felt it was necessary to readjust films screenings accordingly.

Best wishes,
Alessia and Louis

Italian film showing on Monday 25th February – A Special Day – Una Giornata Particolare

Italian flagWe are pleased to invite you to the next film of our Italy through its films series, featuring A Special day – Una Giornata Particolare (Ettore Scola, 1977).

Join us on Monday 25th February in Lecture Theatre B at Avenue Campus at 6:15pm. “A Special Day” takes place on the day of Hitler’s 1938 state visit to Rome, where he was given a gigantic, hysterically enthusiastic reception by Mussolini, the King, the diplomatic corps. After packing off her six children and her husband (all properly uniformed) to attend the rally, Antonietta sets about to clean her cramped apartment when Rosamunda, the mynah bird, escapes and flies to the other side of the courtyard of the now-empty apartment block. This is the device that brings Antonietta and Gabriele together… A Special Day stars Sofia Loren (Antonietta) and Marcello Mastroianni (Gabriele).

There is also a critique of the film by Louis Bayman.

All welcome, free entry!

Italian film showing this evening (Monday 11th February) – The Conformist – Il Conformista

Italian flagWe are pleased to invite you to the next film of our Italy through its films series, featuring The Conformist – Il Conformista (Bernardo Bertolucci, 1970).

Join us on Monday 11th February, in Lecture Theatre B at Avenue Campus at 6:15pm. Bernardo Bertolucci’s expressionist masterpiece is a movie that plugs post-war Italian cinema firmly and directly into the emerging 1970s renaissance in Hollywood film-making. The film is an account of the neuroses and self-loathing of a sexually confused would-be fascist (Jean-Louis Trintignant) aching to fit in in 1938 Rome, who is despatched to Paris to murder his former, anti-fascist college professor. Bertolucci combines a flawless aesthetic with a deep emphasis on composition, design, and camerawork to slowly build a devastating portrait of the kind of personality that allows fascism to flourish. The Conformist is less about drama and more about exploring the brutal truth of its antihero — and how he represents the drives that fuel fascism.

There is also a critique of the film by Corin Depper.

All welcome, free entry!

*RESCHEDULED* Italian film showing on Monday 18th February – The Seduction of Mimì (Mimì metallurgico ferito nell’onore)

Italian flagAs semester 2 starts, we are resuming our Italy through its films screenings on Monday 28th January 2019 with The Seduction of Mimì (Mimì metallurgico ferito nell’onore) by Italian film director Lina Wertmüller, 1972.

Join us on Monday 28th January, in Lecture Theatre B at Avenue Campus at 6:15pm. The film is a deliberately offensive one, with explicit sex scenes in it. A riotous feminist farce about the Mafia, political radicalism and gender relations in 1970s Italy and definitely not a film for the faint-hearted! A sex comedy which seeks deliberately to offend morality and good taste, this is political filmmaking at its most unruly.

Here is Sergio Rigoletto’s film critique.

As always, the film will be introduced in English by Dr Louis Bayman, and a post-film discussion/reflection with the audience in English will be facilitated by Alessia Plutino.

We are looking forward to welcome those of you interested in the event, which is free and open to all.

Italian film showing on Monday 10th December – Divorzio all’italiana – Divorce Italian Style

Italian flagWe are pleased to invite you to the next film of our Italy through its films series, featuring Divorzio all’italiana – Divorce Italian Style (Pietro Germi, 1961).

Join us on Monday 10th December, in Lecture Theatre B at Avenue Campus at 6:15pm. The film looks at the “persistence of antiquated and stubborn moral and social codes (the honour of the Latin male) in the face of situations in which they have become hopelessly outdated: Don Ferdinando Cefalù cannot stand his wife but instead of demanding the modernisation of local custom and of the law (divorce was only legalized in Italy in the 1970s) he prefers to adopt a hypocritical respect for tradition (legislation on crimes of passion goes back to the Fascist era and was not repealed until the 1980s) and settle with the status quo. The all’italiana of the title, therefore, refers to the co-presence of backwardness and modernity, each of which are exploited by the characters when it suits them.” (From: Directory of World Cinema: Italy, edited by Louis Bayman, Intellect Books Ltd, 2012. ProQuest Ebook Central,
https://ebookcentral.proquest.com/lib/soton-ebooks/detail.action?docID=1057951.

There is also a critique of the film by Elena Gipponi.

Pre-screening introduction and post-showing discussion in English, all welcome, free entry.

Italian film showing this evening – I soliti ignoti – Persons unknown

Italian flagWe are pleased to invite you to the next film of our Italy through its films series, featuring I soliti ignoti – Persons unknown.

Join us on Monday 26th November, in Lecture Theatre B at Avenue Campus at 6:15pm as we move on from the socially committed cinema of neorealism, to the satirical, cynical world of “commedia all’ italiana” with a trilogy of screenings starting with I soliti ignoti – Persons unknown (Mario Monicelli, 1958), a wonderful ensemble comedy about a group of hopeless thieves, with Totò, Marcello Mastroianni, Vittorio Gassman, and the first performance of Claudia Cardinale. An unsurpassed vision of an Italy moving towards the economic miracle.

Parodying the perennial traits of an Italy that has only partially succeeded in adjusting to the habits and lifestyles of post-war modernity, these type of comedies have lost none of their bite, nor their warm amusement at the petty foibles underlying society’s pretensions.

Pre-screening introduction and post-showing discussion in English, all welcome, free entry.

Italian film showing this evening – Bicycle Thieves – Ladri di biciclette

Italian flagWe are pleased to invite you to the next film of our Italy through its films series, featuring Bicycle Thieves – Ladri di biciclette.

We will be meeting in Lecture Theatre B at Avenue Campus at 6:15pm on Monday 29th October. All welcome! A brief description of the film by Adam Bingham states: “The film traces a voyage through Italy whose implicit postscript is that tomorrow and the next day ad infinitum the same camera could film the same streets and record similar stories featuring all-too similar people in identical situations; and in this at least, Ladri di biciclette is paradigmatic neorealism.” (Directory of World Cinema: Italy, edited by Louis Bayman, Intellect Books Ltd, 2012. ProQuest Ebook Central,
https://ebookcentral.proquest.com/lib/soton-ebooks/detail.action?docID=1057951)

Italian film showing this evening – Rome Open City – Roma Città Aperta

Italian flagWe are pleased to invite you to the first film of our Italy through its films series, featuring Rome Open City – Roma Città Aperta.

We will be meeting in Lecture Theatre B at Avenue Campus at 6:15pm on Monday 15th October and there will be a short introduction by Louis Bayman followed by a discussion after the screening. All welcome!

We are attaching a critique to the film which we hope will serve as a useful glimpse into this masterpiece of Neoralism.

Italy through its films – launch event tonight!

Italian flagYou are cordially invited to the launch of Italy through its Films on Monday 8th October 2018, Avenue Campus, Lecture Theatre B, 6pm to 7pm for an overview of the screening programme and an introduction to how to understand film as art and as a creative glimpse into the society it comes from. All welcome, book your free ticket via Eventbrite!

Italian film showing today: Pazze di me / Women Drive Me Crazy (Fausto Brizzi, 2013)

Italian flagThe Italian film Una giornata particolare (Fausto Brizzi, 2013)(91 minutes, English subtitles) will be showing in Lecture Theatre B, Avenue Campus, at 6:30pm on Monday 30th April 2018. Review, introduction and discussion by Benedetta Brossa, Modern Languages Erasmus student from Turin, Italy (English & Arabic). All welcome! The trailer for this film can be viewed on YouTube.

N.B. This is the last film of the season, so the discussion will take place over nibbles and drinks. You can bring some finger food or something to drink, but it is not a must.

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In questa commedia si racconta la disgraziata vita di Andrea, unico maschio in una famiglia composta da sole donne alfa. A trent’anni non è ancora riuscito a lasciare il nido famigliare e a sfuggire alla morsa delle femmine squilibrate da cui è circondato: madre, tre sorelle, nonna, badante e cagnetta. Le sue storie sentimentali sono sempre state rovinate dalla presenza invadente della sua famiglia e per questo Andrea decide di tentare di salvare la sua relazione con Giulia attraverso un nuovo espediente: fingerà fin dall’inizio di essere orfano. Ma presto il suo piano inizia ad incrinarsi perché le vicende personali delle donne della sua famiglia vanno complicandosi e Andrea si trova a doverle gestire tutte. Riuscirà Andrea a conquistare la sua indipendenza, a trovare la felicità e a risolvere anche i problemi di tutte le donne della sua famiglia?

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This comedy is about the unfortunate life of Andrea, the only man in a family consisting wholly of alpha females. He is thirty but he hasn’t been able to leave his family home and escape the oppression of the crazy women he is surrounded by: his mother, three sisters, grandmother, carer and the female dog. The stories of his love life are always ruined by his family sticking their nose in. For this reason, Andrea decides to save his relationship with Giulia with an elaborate lie: he pretends to be an orphan. However, this plan soon fails because of growing complications in his family’s stories that he is forced to deal with. Will Andrea be able to achieve his independence, find happiness and at the same time solve the problems of all the women in his life?