To celebrate the return of the Lavazza Italian Film Festival in Australia this September, we've selected these five acclaimed Italian movies to help you get in the Dolce Vita spirit.
SBS Movies

23 Aug 2016 - 2:32 PM  UPDATED 23 Aug 2016 - 2:32 PM

I Am Love

Italy, 2009
Genre: Drama
Director: Luca Guadagnino
Starring:  Tilda Swinton, Edoardo Gabbriellini, Flavio Parenti
What's it about?
Tilda Swinton gives a flawlesss performance in Luca Guadagnino's exquisite melodrama about a woman transformed by love. Her character Emma left Russia over two decades ago to follow her wealthy Italian husband to Milan. With her three children now fully grown, Emma feels unfulfilled. When she meets young chef Antonio (Edoardo Gabbriellini), a secret affair begins that reawakens the forces of passion within.

Why You Should Watch: I Am Love
Dinner and a Movie: I Am Love
Watch David and Margaret's ★★★ review
Top 5 Tilda Swinton performances
SBS On Demand: Tilda Swinton collection



Italy, 2008
Genre: Drama, Crime
Director: Matteo Garrone
Starring: Salvatore Abruzzese, Simone Sacchettino
What's it about?
Based on Roberto Saviano's 2006 best-selling investigative book, the bone-chilling Gomorrah describes through the stories of five individuals how the Camorra, a powerful local mafia, touches all the aspects of economic life in Naples. An eye-opening, must-see film, which won the Grand Prix at the 2008 Cannes Film Festival.

Read ★★★★ review


Bicycle Thieves

Italy, 1948
Genre: Classics, Drama
Director: Vittorio De Sica
Starring: Lamberto Maggiorani, Enzo Staiola, Lianella Carell
What's it about?
Italian director Vittorio De Sica's neorealist masterpiece won an Academy Honorary Award at the 1950 Oscars and is considered one of the best movies ever made. Set in post-World War II Italy, this powerful story of dignity and sacrifice follows an impoverished man and his son as they walk the streets of Rome, desperately looking for his stolen bike, his only means of livelihood.

Dinner and a Movie: Bicycle Thieves


Il Divo

Italy, 2008
Genre: Biography, Drama
Director: Paolo Sorrentino
Starring: Toni Servillo, Anna Bonaiuto, Giulio Bosetti
What's it about?
Paolo Sorrentino takes you inside the corridors of power in this engrossing story of the man who served as Italy's Prime Minister on three occasions, Giulio Andreotti, whose 'bland bureaucrat' demeanour concealed rumoured links to a vast web of shady deals and unsavoury characters. Toni Servillo is mesmerising as the drab politician, and his performance demonstrates why he and Sorrentino make such a formidable team.


My Brother Is an Only Child

Italy, 2007
Genre: Comedy, Crime, Drama
Director: Daniele Luchetti
Starring: Riccardo Scamarcio, Elio Germano, Angela Finocchiaro
What's it about?
This compelling story of a sibling rivalry shines a light on the bitter political and social divisions that plagued Italy in the 1960s and '70s. Starring Italian heartthrob, Riccardio Scamarcio (Loose Cannons), as a charismatic communist activist, and Elio Germano as his fascist-leaning brother, this tragi-comic drama is packed with snappy dialogue and wry humour, and leads to an explosive climax.

My Brother is an Only Child Review


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