Italian Films at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Film Festival

  • 14 Apr 2011
  • 05 May 2011
  • St. Anthony Main Theatre, 115 Southeast Main St, Minneapolis

Minneapolis-St. Paul International Film Festival presents four new Italian films 

LA PRIMA COSA BELLA (The First Beautiful Thing)

Directed by Paolo Virzi

Italy, 2010, in Italian with English Subtitles

Saturday, April 16 at 9:30pm
Friday, April 22 at 4:45pm

Winner of Best Film at the Salerno International Film Festival, and Winner of Best Actress, Actor, and Screenplay at the Donatello Awards (Italian Oscars). Internationally acclaimed, award-winning Italian writer/director Paolo Virzì, adds another hit to his impressive filmography that brims with sly humor and off-kilter shooting style perfectly mimicking the segmented nature of the characters' relationships. Strong acting combined with an even-keeled directing will make this delightful and breezy film a festival favorite. A story spanning four decades, The First Beautiful Thing finds imprudent Bruno attempting reconciliation with his mother, the reckless and stunningly beautiful Anna, who's recently stricken with cancer. This crowd-pleasing family drama surprises with its subtle comedic touch and conscious avoidance of the sentimental trappings that can become all too commonplace in this much-revisited genre.


Directed by Michelangelo Frammartino
Italy/Germany/Switzerland, 2010, in Italian with English Subtitles 

Saturday, April 23 at 5:00pm
Monday, April 25 at 5:00pm

Winner of the Europa Cinemas Label at the Cannes Directors' Fortnight. The large scope of existence is examined through the voiceless minutiae of the everyday in this chronicle of four reincarnations of one soul.  From a goat-herder seeking remedy in the dusty church floor to a burlap sack of charcoal, this is a truly influential cinematic demonstration of the defining qualities that bind all humanity together. Writer/director Michelangelo Frammartino’s documentarian tendencies and attention to the immediate landscape call to mind the works of Jia Zhangke and Pedro Costa. Those intrigued by the mysticism and long, penetrating takes found in recent Palme d'Or recipient Uncle Boonmee will find an equally compelling companion piece in this Italian feature.

À (The Man Who Will Come)

Directed by Giorgio Diritti
Italy, 2009, in Italian, German and Latin with English Subtitles

Sunday, April 24 at 6:45pm
Wednesday, April 27 at 9:00pm

Following his impressive debut with The Wind Blows Round, Giorgio Diritti returns with a dense historical drama that earned him the Silver Grand Jury prize at the International Rome Film Festival and the Audience Award at the Brussels European Film Festival. It is winter in 1943, in Monte Sole, a remote community outside of Bologna. Though relatively unchanged for centuries, the realities of war will not spare this village for long. As the war threatens to close in on Monte Sole, eight year-old Martina has other things on her mind. The only child of a peasant family, Martina has been mute since the death of her infant brother years ago. With her mother pregnant again, Martina anxiously awaits the arrival of her sibling as if it were her own rebirth. But as the march of combat pushes forward, life in the village gets more difficult. Finally, on the night of September 28, 1944, the baby is born. Almost simultaneously the German SS troops unleash an unprecedented retaliation against the partisans and all who live within the area. With his second feature, Diritti has crafted a film rich of beauty and conviction amidst cruelty, further solidifying him reputation as a noteworthy filmmaker in contemporary Italian cinema.


Directed by Carlo Mazzacurati
Italy, 2010, in Italian with English Subtitles 

Friday, April 29 at 5:00pm 
Wednesday, May 4 at 7:15pm

How can you capture the consciousness of a city? In Sei Venezia, award winning Italian filmmaker Carlo Mazzacurati goes in search of the pulse of Venice, attempting to touch the soul of the city itself. Peering into the mysterious corners, down narrow alleys and icy waterways, and into the lives of six of the city’s citizens, this
beautiful documentary captures a Venice that is both immediately
contemporary and strangely timeless. Through the stories of these
citizens, Mazzacurati brings the distant city to life within the
peaceful darkness of the cinema

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