Wednesday, November 19, 2014

New Italian Cinema at the San Francisco Film Society



Asia Argento, Gabriel Garko and Charlotte Gainsbourg at Cannes premiere of "Misunderstood".
The San Francisco Film Society presents another weekend of new films from world cinema, New Italian Cinema.  Opening Night is Nov 19 featuring two short films of Edoardo Ponti, who will be in attendance. The first is The Nightshift Belongs to the Stars, starring Julian Sands, Nastassja Kinski and Enrico Lo Verso.  Kinski plays Sonia, an unhappy married woman and Lo Verso plays Matteo, both of whom have underwent cardiac surgery and meet after six months in the Dolemites of northeastern Italy.

In Ponti’s other short film, the magnificent Sophia Loren stars in Human Voice based on a play by Jean Cocteau’ as Angela. Loren gives a brilliant solo performance as a woman who speaks on the telephone with the man she loves who is leaving her for another woman. It is to be their last telephone and Loren executes every line as a master of acting. 

Asia Argento’s Misunderstood also screens on Nov 19, a film that was selected for the "Un Certain Regard" section at the Cannes Film Festival in May this year.  The film is about Aria, (played by Giulia Salerno) the 9-year-old daughter of celebrity parents, not unlike Asia own parents - actress and screenwriter Daria Nicolodi and cult director of the gothic horror giallo or crime fiction, Dario Argento. Aria shuffles back and forth between her parents, unable to find peace in her visits, and inevitably thrown out by her father who has a daughter from a previous marriage. Aria’s mother is a renowned pianist played by (Charlotte Gainsbourg) and her father is an Italian TV star played by Gabriel Garko. Beyond the story is a magnificent set design with extraordinary colors and touches that are to Argento’s credit as director and also to cinematographer Nicola Pecorin and costumes by Nicoletta Ercole.

On November 20 Controra will screen by Rossella de Venuto in a "giallo". In  this Irish Italian co-production, Megan played by Fiona Glascott decides to accompany her husband Leo (Pietro Ragusa) to Italy for the reading of his uncle’s will, Domenico. Megan is somewhat clairvoyant and has visions and nightmares of her husband’s family in this supernatural thriller.

All in all there are 12 features in the "New Italian Cinema" section of this series and two shorts, representing the very finest of Italian Cinema.


© 2014 - Moira Sullivan- Air Date: 11/19/14
Movie Magazine International

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