Italian Films


DVDs in Italian

8 1/2
Director: Federico Fellini
2001 (1963)
Fellini’s autobiographical film about a famous film director who loses his inspiration in the midst of making a film.
Call number: DVD 8 1/2

The Adventure / L’avventura
Director: Michelangelo Antonioni
2001 (1960)
Story about the search for a girl lost on an island; the searchers gradually become preoccupied with their own problems. 143 min.
Call number: DVD lavv

Director: Federico Fellini
1998 (1973)
Fellini’s memories of love, sex, politics, family life and growing up in Rimini, a small Italian town, in the 1930′s.
Call number: DVD amar

Best of Youth / La meglio gioventù
Director: Marco Tullio Giardana
2006 (2003)
Divided by politics but bonded by blood, Italian brothers Nicola and Matteo find their paths intersecting through some of the most tumultuous events in recent history. Produced for Italian television, but never broadcast; released theatrically instead. 368 mins.
Call number: DVD best

Bread and Tulips / Pane e tulipani
Director: Silvio Soldini
2002 (2000)
When a harried housewife is accidentally left behind while on vacation with her family, she decides to take a holiday of her own in Venice. She becomes charmed by the city and her newfound freedom. She decides to extend her stay, finding a job in a flower shop, renting a room from a wistful waiter, and rediscovers her love for playing the accordion. But her solo journey does not sit well with her tyrannical husband, who hires an amateur detective to bring her back home.
Call number: DVD PN 1997 .P364 2002

Ciao, Professore
Director: Lina Wertmuller
2003 (1993)
The story of an upper-class teacher from conservative Northern Italy who, due to a computer error, finds himself teaching third-grade truants at a ramshackle school in the south. Based on the novel by Marcello D’Orta.
Call number: DVD ciao

Cinema Paradiso / Nuovo Cinema Paradiso
Director: Giuseppe Tornatore
2006 (1989)
A filmmaker returns to his Sicilian hometown for the first time in thirty years and looks back on his life. As a young boy he was befriended by the projectionist at the movie theater, the Cinema Paradiso. As he grew up, he learned to love films, and was encouraged by his good friend to pursue his dream of one day making movies.
Call number: DVD cine

Don’t Move / Non ti Muovere
Director: Sergio Castellitto
2006 (2004)
Life takes a dramatic turn for successful surgeon Timoteo when he discovers that his young daughter is seriously injured in an accident. Faced with the loss of his daughter, Timoteo’s life begins to flash back to his illicit love affair with a destitute young woman named Italia. As their encounters increase in passion, Timoteo finds himself entangled in a torrid love affair that he cannot end. With no where to go, Timoteo is forced into making a decision that will break both his and Italia’s hearts and change their lives forever.
Call number: DVD dont

The Sweet Life / La Dolce Vita
Director: Federico Fellini
2004 (1960)
A journalist ventures into the decadent society of modern Rome and finds that his values are being destroyed, leaving him totally disillusioned.
Call number: DVD dolc

I’m Not Scared / Io Non Ho Paura
Director: Gabriele Salvatores
2004 (1991)
While playing outside one day in a wheat field, nine-year-old Michele discovers Filippo, who is chained to the ground at the bottom of a hole. Michele witnesses town bad boy Felice nearby and suspects something bad is happening. Michele is unsure whom he should tell about his discovery, eventually spilling the tale to his closest friend. When Michele’s parents learn of his discovery, they warn him to forget whatever he saw.
Call number: DVD imno

Juliet of the Spirits / Giulietta Degli Spiriti
Director: Frederico Fellini
2002 (1965)
A bored Italian housewife discovers she can conjure up spirits which bring her sexual satisfaction through complex fantasies. 137 mins.
Call number: DVD juli

The Last Kiss / La L’Ultimo Bacio
Director: Gabriele Muccino
Carlo’s life is thrown into a tailspin when his longtime girlfriend Giulia announces she’s pregnant. As Carlos faces up to his anxieties about adulthood, his buddies reluctantly grapple with their own responsibilities.
Call number: DVD last

The Leopard / Il Gattopardo
Director: Luchino Visconti
2004 (1963)
Recounting the years of Italy’s Risorgimento-when the aristocracy lost its grip and the middle classes rose and formed a democratic Italy. Contains the original Italian version with optional subtitles, the English-language version and special features.
Call number: DVD PN 1997 .G388 2004

Life is Beautiful / La vita è bella
Director: R. Benigni
1999 (1997)
A charming but bumbling waiter who’s gifted with a colorful imagination and an irresistible sense of humor has won the heart of the woman he loves and has created a beautiful life for his young family. Then that life is threatened by World War II.
Call number: DVD life

Director: Pier Paolo Pasolini
2007 (1969)
Based on the Greek classic by Euripides, Pasolini’s Medea tells the tale of Jason, the leader of the invincible army of the Argonauts, and his quest for the Golden Fleece. Maria Callas stars as Medea in her only film. 118 min.
Call number: DVD mede

My Brother is an Only Child / Mio fratello è figlio unico
Director: Daniele Luchetti
2008 (2006)
Traces the relationship of two brothers, one a Communist and the other a Fascist, through the turbulent 1960s in Italy.
Call number: DVD mybr

La Notte
Director: Michelangelo Antonioni
An emotionally estranged couple faces heartache, desperation, and personal loss all in the course of one night. 115 min., b&w.
Call number: DVD nott

The Night of the Shooting Stars / Notte di San Lornezo
Director: Paolo & Vittorio Taviani
2008 (1982)
It is the Night of San Lorenzo, the night when dreams come true. While watching shooting stars, Cecilia tells her son about a similar night in 1944, when she was six years old, and the residents of San Martino, her small Tuscan hometown, struggled against Nazi oppression during the final days of WWII.
Call number: DVD nigh

Nights of Cabiria
Director: Federico Fellini
1999 (1957)
A prostitute searches for happiness.
Call number: DVD nigh

Open City
Director: Roberto Rossellini
1997 (1945)
The loyalties of an impoverished mother-to-be and a parish priest are tested by the German forces which occupy their homeland during World War II. 105 min., b&w.
Call number: DVD open

Orange Thief
Directors: Boogie Dean, Vinnie Angel, Artie Wilinski
Living on the outskirts of society, an orange thief and some other country-wise ruffians steal fruit for sustenance and the sheer excitement of courting danger. After the thief ends up in jail, his life takes a turn when his bunkmate promises him a deal. 84 min.
Call number: DVD oran

The Postman / Il Postino
Director: Michael Radford
2000 (1994)
The postman, Mario, enlists the aid of the poet Pablo Neruda to conquer the heart of the beautiful Beatrice. 113 min.
Call number: DVD post

Director: Emanuele Crialese
Grazia is a carefree mother of three, who soon becomes the focus of her neighbors’ gossip. While her fellow Lampedusians work and live hard – oblivious to their native paradise – Grazia alone is courageous enough to blissfully embrace life’s treasures. Her wild, sensual and free-spirited behavior reflects the unrivaled beauty of her heavenly seaside village. She is not understood or accepted by the social conventions of the town, nor its strict tribal rules. 95 min.
Call number: DVD resp

Director: Federico Fellini
1999 (1957)
An allegorical satire of modern life through the depiction of Nero’s reign in ancient Rome.
Call number: DVD saty

The Son’s Room
Director: Nanni Moretti
A family tries to cope with a devastating loss. 99 min.
Call number: DVD sons

La Strada
Director: Federico Fellini
2003 (1954)
Gelsomina is sold by her mother into the employ of Zampanó, a brutal traveling strongman. 108 min., 2 discs, b&w.
Call number: DVD stra

The Swindle / Il Bidone
Director: Federico Fellini
2000 (1954)
An aging swindler, ringleader of a trio of petty thieves who impersonates priests to cheat peasants, finally realizes the futility of his life. 91 min., b&w.
Call number: DVD bido

Variety Lights / Luci del Varieta
Director: Federico Fellini, Alberto Lattvada
2000 (1950)
A newly restored print of Fellini’s directorial debut. The film features the director’s wife and frequent collaborator, Giulietta Masina, and it introduces Fellini’s affection for carnivalesque characters and the variety show, both of which influenced much of his later work. The movie features the onstage and backstage antics of a provincial troupe of lovably inept vaudeville performers travelling laboriously from one small town to another for little pay and ever-uncertain receptions. 97 min.
Call number: DVD vari

I Vitelloni / The Young and the Passionate
Director: Federico Fellini
2004 (1953)
Character study of five aimless young men living in a small Italian town, based in part upon Fellini’s own experiences and those of his acquaintances. b&w, 107 min.
Call number: DVD ivit

VHS Tapes in Italian

The Bicycle Thief / Ladri di Biciclette
Director: Vittorio de Sica
1998 (1948)
Simple story of an unemployed man and his family living in war devastated Rome. The father finds a job pasting up signs, work requiring a bicycle on which to get around. When his bicycle is stolen the father and his son are forced to steal one in desperation and are caught.
Call number: Call Number: VHS PN 1997 .B53 S54

Fellini’s Roma
Director: Federico Fellini
1999 (1972)
A film adaptation of Federico Fellini’s reminiscences of Rome before World War II, as compared to the present as it was when the film was originally produced.
Call number: VHS PN 1997 .R66. 1999

The Gospel According to St. Matthew / Vangelo Secondo Matteo
Director: Pier Paolo Pasolini
1990 (1964)
The film, which won a Special Jury Prize at the 1964 Venice Film Festival, is different from other cinematic depictions of the life of Christ in that there is no screenplay per se. Pasolini limited himself to the account by Matthew; only words written by the Saint are employed; no additional dialogue was written and only scenes described by Matthew are shown. Pasolini used no professional actors (his mother played the older Mary) and he dedicated his film “to the dear familiar memory of John XXIII.”.
Call number: VHS BS 2575.5 .G682

Life is Beautiful / La vita è bella
Director: R. Benigni
1999 (1997)
A charming but bumbling waiter who’s gifted with a colorful imagination and an irresistible sense of humor has won the heart of the woman he loves and has created a beautiful life for his young family. Then that life is threatened by World War II.
Call number: VHS PN 1997 .V572 1999

Director: Paolo Pasolini
With Maria Callas. 100 min.
Call number: VHS PN 1997 .M42


DVDs in English with Italian Cultural Content

Death in Venice
Director: Luchino Visconti
2004 (1971)
In Venice on holiday, composer Gustav Aschenbach encounters a young Polish boy and becomes obsessed with him, a secret passion that will lead to his doom.
Call number: DVD deat

Tea with Mussolini
Director: Franco Zeffirelli
Luca is a boy living in Florence whose family situation is precarious at best; his mother has run off and his father has little time for him. Fortunately, he’s a welcome guest with Mary, a English woman visiting Italy to soak up European culture. Mary and her friends enjoy the cultured, creative atmosphere of life in Italy, and their initial response to the rise of fascism is to arrange a polite meeting with Mussolini to make sure he and his soldiers mean well.
In English or French with optional English or French subtitles.
Call number: DVD PN 1997 .T377 1999

Under the Tuscan Sun
Director: Audrey Wells
While on vacation, a just-divorced writer buys a villa in Tuscany on a whim, hoping it will be the start of a change for the better in her life. Along the way she finds that sometimes what seems like a mistake is really a blessing. Dialogue in English or French, with optional Spanish subtitles. Based on the book by Frances Mayes.
Call number: DVD unde

Other resources available for Italian films:

Italian Through Film: A Text for Italian Courses
Antonello Borra & Cristina Pausini
New Haven: Yale University Press, 2004
This book incorporates contemporary Italian films, into the teaching of language and culture. The book is adaptable for any level of language instruction and devotes one chapter to each of ten entertaining movies-among them Cinema Paradiso, La vita e bella, Mediterraneo, and Il postino. Pre-viewing, viewing, and post-viewing activities appropriate to the various films are included in each chapter. The exercises range in difficulty from elementary to highly sophisticated and are designed to enhance students’ vocabulary and cultural awareness as well as oral and written skills.
Call number: PC 1128 .B67 2004