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|Nuovo Cinema Paradiso|
Original release poster
|Directed by||Giuseppe Tornatore|
|Written by||Giuseppe Tornatore|
|Editing by||Mario Morra|
|Studio||Les Films Ariane|
|Distributed by||Miramax Films (US)|
|Running time||155 minutes
124 minutes (International cut)
174 minutes (Director's cut)
Nuovo Cinema Paradiso (Italian pronunciation: [ˈnwɔːvo ˈtʃiːnema paraˈdiːzo] New Paradise Cinema), internationally released as Cinema Paradiso, is a 1988 Italian drama film written and directed by Giuseppe Tornatore. The film stars Jacques Perrin, Philippe Noiret, Leopoldo Trieste, Marco Leonardi, Agnese Nano and Salvatore Cascio, and was produced by Franco Cristaldi and Giovanna Romagnoli, while the music score was composed by Ennio Morricone along with his son, Andrea.
In Rome during the 1980s, famous Italian film director Salvatore Di Vita, returns home late one evening, where his girlfriend sleepily tells him that his mother called to say that someone named Alfredo has died. Salvatore obviously shies away from committed relationships, and he has not been back to his home village of Giancaldo, Sicily in 30 years. As she asks him who Alfredo is, Salvatore flashes back to his childhood.
It is a few years after World War II. Six-year-old Salvatore is the mischievous, highly intelligent son of a war widow. Nicknamed Toto, he discovers a love for films and spends every free moment at the local movie house — Cinema Paradiso. There he develops a friendship with the fatherly projectionist, Alfredo, who takes a shine to the young boy and often lets him watch movies in the projection booth. During the movies, the audience can frequently be heard booing whenever there are missing sections, causing the films to suddenly jump, bypassing a critical romantic kiss or embrace. The local priest has ordered these sections to be "censored." The deleted scenes are piled on the projection room floor. At first, Alfredo considers Toto a pest, but eventually he teaches Salvatore how to operate the film projector. The montage ends as the movie house catches fire — highly inflammable Nitrate film was in routine use at the time. Salvatore saves Alfredo's life, but not before the film reels explode in Alfredo's face, leaving him permanently blind. The Cinema Paradiso is rebuilt by a town citizen, Ciccio, who invests his football lottery winnings in it. Salvatore, though still a child, is hired to be the new projectionist, as he is the only one who knows how to run the machines.
About a decade later, Salvatore, now in high school, is still the projectionist at the Cinema Paradiso. His relationship with the blind Alfredo has only strengthened, and Salvatore often looks to him for advice — advice that Alfredo often dispenses by quoting classic films. Salvatore has started experimenting with filmmaking, using a home movie camera, and he has met, and captured on film, a girl, Elena, daughter of a wealthy banker. Salvatore woos — and wins — Elena's heart, only to lose her owing to her father's disapproval. As Elena and her family move away, Salvatore leaves town to serve his compulsory military service. His attempts to write to Elena are fruitless; his letters are always returned as undeliverable. Upon his return from the military, Alfredo urges Salvatore to leave Giancaldo permanently, counseling that the town is too small for Salvatore to ever find his dreams. Moreover, the old man tells him that once he leaves, he must pursue his destiny wholeheartedly, never looking back and never returning, even to visit — he must never give in to nostalgia or even write or think about them.
Salvatore has obeyed Alfredo, but he returns home for the first time to attend the funeral. Though the town has changed greatly, he now understands why Alfredo thought it was so important that he leave. Alfredo's widow tells him that the old man followed Salvatore's successes with pride, and he has left him something — an unlabeled film reel and the old stool that Salvatore once stood on to operate the projector. Salvatore learns that Cinema Paradiso is to be demolished to give way to parking lots. As he looks at the proceedings, he recognizes many people who attended the cinema when he was a projectionist there.
Salvatore returns to Rome. He watches Alfredo's reel and discovers that it is a very special montage. It contains all the romantic scenes that the priest ordered to be cut from movies. Alfredo spliced all the sequences together to form a single film. Salvatore has made peace with his past.
- Philippe Noiret as Alfredo
- Salvatore Cascio as Salvatore Di Vita (child)
- Marco Leonardi as Salvatore Di Vita (adolescent)
- Jacques Perrin as Salvatore Di Vita (adult)
- Antonella Attili as Maria (young)
- Enzo Cannavale as Spaccafico
- Isa Danieli as Anna
- Pupella Maggio as Maria (old)
- Agnese Nano as Elena Mendola (adolescent)
- Leopoldo Trieste as Father Adelfio
- Nino Terzo as Peppino's Father
- Giovanni Giancono as The Mayor
- Brigitte Fossey (Extended cut) as Elena Mendola (adult)
Cinema Paradiso was shot in director Tornatore's hometown Bagheria, Sicily, as well as Cefalù on the Tyrrhenian Sea. Told largely in flashback of a successful film director Salvatore to his childhood years, it also tells the story of the return to his native Sicilian village for the funeral of his old friend Alfredo, who was the projectionist at the local "Cinema Paradiso". Ultimately, Alfredo serves as a wise father figure to his young friend who only wishes the best to see him succeed, even if it means breaking his heart in the process.
Seen as an example of "nostalgic postmodernism", the film intertwines sentimentality with comedy, and nostalgia with pragmaticism. It explores issues of youth, coming of age, and reflections (in adulthood) about the past. The imagery in each scene can be said to reflect Salvatore's idealised memories about his childhood. Cinema Paradiso is also a celebration of films; as a projectionist, young Salvatore (a.k.a. Totò) develops the passion for films that shapes his life path in adulthood.
The film exists in multiple versions. It was originally released in Italy at 155 minutes, but poor box office performance in its native country led to its being shortened to 123 minutes for international release; it was an instant success. This international version won the Special Jury Prize at the 1989 Cannes Film Festival and the 1989 Best Foreign Language Film Oscar. In 2002, the director's cut 173-minute version was released (known in the U.S. as Cinema Paradiso: The New Version).
Extended cut 
In the 154-minute version of the film, after the funeral Salvatore glimpses a young girl who so resembles the teenage Elena that she must be a close relative. Following the teen on her scooter to note the home address, Salvatore is eventually reunited with his long-lost love — the girl's mother — and shares brief moments making love to her in a car overlooking a favorite location from their adolescent years. He discovers that she has married an acquaintance from his school years, who has become a local politician of modest means. Afterwards, feeling cheated, he strives to rekindle their romance, and while she clearly wishes it were possible, she rejects his entreaties, choosing to remain with her family and leave their romance in the past. During their brief night together, a frustrated and angry Salvatore asks Elena why she never contacted him or left word of where her family was moving to. We learn that the reason they lost touch was because Alfredo had asked her not to see him again, fearing that Salvatore's romantic fulfillment would only destroy what Alfredo sees as Salvatore's destiny, to be successful in film. Alfredo tried to convince her that if she loved Salvatore, she must leave him for his own good. Elena explains to Salvatore that, against Alfredo's instruction, she'd left a note with an address where she could be reached and a promise of undying love and loyalty. Salvatore obviously never knew of, or found, her note and thus lost his true love for more than thirty years. The next morning Salvatore returns to the now decaying Cinema Paradiso and frantically searches through the piles of old film invoices that are pinned to the wall of the projectionist's booth. There, on the reverse side of one of the dockets, he finds the handwritten note that Elena had left him thirty years earlier. Effectively, it was Alfredo's silence that had kept the romantic adolescents apart, so that Salvatore would then move on to achieve great things.
The film ends with Salvatore returning to Rome and viewing the film reel that Alfredo left for him, tears in his eyes. The final impression of the extended cut is more bittersweet when compared to the pared-down version: Salvatore sees Alfredo as both the source of great love in his life and of great loss, as he has been cheated of the only woman he ever truly loved.
Cinema Paradiso was a critical and box-office success and is regarded by many as a classic. It is particularly renowned for the 'kissing scenes' montage near the end of the film. Winning the Academy Award for Best Foreign Film in 1989, the film is often credited with reviving Italy's film industry which later produced Mediterraneo and Life Is Beautiful.
Review aggregate Rotten Tomatoes reports that 89% of critics have given the film a positive review based on 57 reviews, with an average score of 7.9/10. The film also holds a score of 79 based on 16 reviews on Metacritic. The film was ranked #27 in Empire magazine's "The 100 Best Films Of World Cinema" in 2010.
- 1989: Cannes Film Festival
- 1989: Golden Globe Awards
- 1989: Academy Awards
- 1991: BAFTA Awards
- 2010 : 1st Annual 20/20 Awards
- Nominated - Best Picture
- Won - Best Foreign Language Picture
- Won - Best Cinematography
||This article has an unclear citation style. (July 2012)|
- Vancheri, Barabara (March 26, 1990). "Foreign-movie nominees discuss money, muses". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. p. 10. Retrieved July 7, 2012.
- Porter, Darwin; Danforth Prince (2009). Frommer's Sicily. Frommer's. p. 132. ISBN 0-470-39899-X.
- Marcus, p. 99
- Bondanella, p. 454
- "Festival de Cannes: Cinema Paradiso". festival-cannes.com. Retrieved 2009-08-01.
- "Cinema Paradiso Movie Reviews, Pictures". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved 2011-01-26.
- "Cinema Paradiso Movie Reviews, Ratings, Credits, and More". Metacritic. Retrieved 2011-01-26.
- "The 100 Best Films Of World Cinema". Empire
The famed "kissing scene" montage at the end of the film was used in an episode of "Stealing First Base", an episode of The Simpsons that aired during on March 21, 2010, during its twenty-first season. The scene used Morricone's "Love Theme" and included animated clips of famous movie kisses, including scenes used in Nuovo Cinema Paradiso as well as contemporary films not shown in the original film. Text " 27. Cinema Paradiso " ignored (help)
- Awards IMDB
- Bondanella, Peter E. (2001). Italian cinema: from neorealism to the present. Continuum International Publishing. ISBN 0-8264-1247-5.
- Marcus, Millicent Joy (2002). After Fellini: national cinema in the postmodern age. JHU Press. ISBN 0-8018-6847-5.
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- Official website
- Nuovo cinema Paradiso at the Internet Movie Database
- Cinema Paradiso at AllRovi
- Cinema Paradiso at Rotten Tomatoes
A World Apart
(award then called Grand Prix Special du Jury)
|Grand Prix du Jury, Cannes
tied with Trop belle pour toi
Tilaï tied with
The Sting of Death