THE BEST OF ITALY at the 57th BFI London Film Festival‏



A considerable number of Italian films have recently taken impressive awards and received critical acclaim at major festivals, making 2013 a successful year for Italian cinema.

At the 70th Venice Film Festival SACRO GRA, directed by Gianfranco Rosi, won the Golden Lion and actress Elena Cotta won the Coppa Volpi for her role in A STREET IN PALERMO (Via Castellana Bandiera).

Also screening in competition in Venice, A LONELY HERO (L’Intrepido) won the Laterna Magica (CGS) Prize as well as the Fondazione Mimmo Rotella Prize. BERTOLUCCI ON BERTOLUCCI was screened in the Venice Classics section, and was warmly received by the public and critics alike.

At the Italian Golden Globes Valeria Golino’s directorial debut HONEY (MIELE) won Best First Feature Film, and the film’s leading actress Jasmine Trinca won Best Actress.

At this year’s Cannes International Film Festival SALVO won the Critics’ Week Grand Prize.


Italian films will once again be under the spotlight during the 57th BFI London Film Festival, which runs from 9th – 20th October, and this year Italy will be screening the following nine titles:

A STREET IN PALERMO (Via Castellana Bandiera), by Emma Dante

BERTOLUCCI ON BERTOLUCCI, by Luca Guadagnino and Walter Fasano

HONEY (Miele), by Valeria Golino

A LONELY HERO (L’Intrepido), by Gianni Amelio

MY CLASS (La Mia Classe), by Daniele Gaglianone

SACRO GRA, by Gianfranco Rosi

SALVO, by Antonio Piazza and Fabio Grassadonia

STOP THE POUNDING HEART, by Roberto Minervini

THOSE HAPPY YEARS (Anni Felici), by Daniele Luchetti


Actress and first time director Valeria Golino, actress Jasmine Trinca and actor Antonio Albanese will be attending, along with directors Emma Dante, Walter Fasano, Daniele Gaglianone, Antonio Piazza, Fabio Grassadonia, Roberto Minervini and Daniele Luchetti.

Istituto Luce Cinecittà is once again delighted to be presenting its films in London, bringing audiences a selection of eye-opening films which are stimulating, and never cease to surprise. /


THE FILMS: Public Screenings:



Director Gianfranco Rosi – 93 mins

Wednesday 9 NFT1 9pm; Thursday 10 ICA1 8.45pm

Strand: Journey

Winner of the Golden Lion at this year’s Venice Film Festival, acclaimed director Gianfranco Rosi’s documentary tells the story of the people and places that populate the areas surrounding Rome’s giant ring road – the Grande Raccordo

Anulare – and discovers the invisible worlds and possible futures harboured in this area of constant turmoil.



Directors Luca Guadagnino and Walter Fasano – 120 mins

Thursday 10 NFT1 12.15pm; Sunday 13 MAYFAIR 3.15pm

Strand: Love

Directors Luca Guadagnino (I Am Love) and Walter Fasano present this perceptive documentary on the life and work of the legendary Bernardo Bertolucci. Using archive material from the last 50 years, this documentary offers a unique insight to one of the world’s most celebrated directors in which he talks about his work, philosophies and influences.



Director Roberto Minervini – 100 mins

Thursday 10 NFT2 4pm; Sunday 13 CINÉ LUMIÈRE 1pm; Thursday 17 RENOIR 9pm

Strand: Love

The third part of Italian-born but mainly US-based filmmaker Roberto Minervini’s loose Texan trilogy (after The Passage and Low Tide). Stop The Pounding Heart, which was shot in English, is a stunning portrayal of adolescence, family and social values, gender roles, and religion in contemporary America, and the insular communities that dot its landscape.


MY CLASS (La Mia Classe)

Director Daniele Gaglianone – 92 mins

Friday 11 NFT2 8.30pm; Sunday 13 RENOIR 12.30pm

Strand: Journey

Multi award-winning director Daniele Gaglianone brings this thought provoking drama-documentary about a teacher holding Italian lessons for an assorted group of immigrants. To gain permanent residence in Italy and improve their chances of employment, the students have to learn the language to secure a future in the country.

Using “real” immigrants from a variety of countries, each character brings his or her own world into the classroom.


HONEY (Miele)

Director Valeria Golino – 100 mins

Saturday 12 RICH MIX 6.30pm; Sunday 13 CINÉ LUMIÈRE 9pm

Strand: Debate

Established Italian actress Valeria Golino makes her directorial debut with this thought provoking drama. Irene, aka Honey, lives an isolated and uncomplicated life but conceals her secret work in helping terminally ill people to end their lives. When called to a new assignment her convictions are challenged and this unusual relationship will change Irene’s life forever.


A STREET IN PALERMO (Via Castellana Bandiera)

Director Emma Dante – 90 mins

Sunday 13 RITZY 6.30pm; Tuesday 15 NFT3 3.45pm

Strand: Laugh

It’s a Sunday afternoon and shut inside their cars, two women face off in a silent duel. Meeting head-on in the streets of Palermo, and as tempers get heated, each driver refuses to reverse and let the other car pass. When the local neighbourhood gets involved, taking bets on which women will hold her position the longest, what started as a trivial confrontation develops into a Mexican standoff.



Directors-Scr Fabio Grassadonia and Antonio Piazza – 105 mins

Friday 18 VUE7 6.15pm; Sunday 20 CINÉ LUMIÈRE 4.30pm

Strand: First Feature Competition

Salvo, a hitman for the Sicilian Mafia, is solitary, cold and ruthless. When he sneaks into a house to eliminate a member of a rival Mafia clan, he discovers Rita, a young blind girl. When Salvo spares her life, something extraordinary happens. From then on, these two beings – both haunted by the world they belong to – are linked together forever. Winner of the Grand Prix prize at this year’s Cannes Film Festival.

Salvo will be released in the UK by Peccadillo Pictures on 1st April 2014


A LONELY HERO (L’Intrepido)

Director Gianni Amelio – 104 mins

Friday 18 RITZY 8.45pm; Saturday 19 NFT2 8.45pm; Sunday 20 VUE5 6pm

Set in Milan, this affecting and timely film tells the story of a middle aged, precariously employed jack-of-all-trades, who doggedly tries to get by in an unfeeling city while trying to retain his dignity and his passions. While our hero remains defiantly optimistic, upbeat and unflappable, behind the persona he also carries a vein of hurt and unhappiness.

Against this impersonal world, Gianni Amelio paints a portrait of modern life with all of its uncertainties, love, pain and grace.



Director Daniele Luchetti – 101 mins

Friday 18 CURZON MAYFAIR 9.15pm; Saturday 19 SCREEN ON THE GREEN 3.30pm

Strand: Love

From Italian writer-director Daniele Luchetti, this touching and insightful romantic comedy tells the story of a marriage under stress. An egotistical artist finds his self-satisfied world turned upside down in the wake of a disastrous exhibition and his wife’s journey towards new personal freedom. Never losing sight of the complexities that motivate his characters, Luchetti’s partly autobiographical film is stylistically conventional, balanced, clear and edgy.

Get Social


Latest Posts