Pinocchio (2002 film)
|Directed by||Roberto Benigni|
|Produced by||Gianluigi Braschi|
|Written by||Vincenzo Cerami
Kim Rossi Stuart
|Music by||Nicola Piovani|
|Edited by||Simona Paggi|
Cecchi Gori Group
|Distributed by||Medusa Distribuzione
Miramax Films (US)
|Running time||108 minutes|
English (United States dub)
Pinocchio is a 2002 Italian live-action family film directed by and starring Roberto Benigni. The film is based on The Adventures of Pinocchio by Carlo Collodi with Benigni portraying Pinocchio. It was shot in Italy and Kalkara, Malta. The film was later dubbed in the United States.
A magical log falls off a wagon and rolls through an Italian town causing considerable damage and some injuries. It comes to rest in front of the house of Geppetto, a poor wood carver who carves a puppet named Pinocchio from it. To Geppetto's surprise, the puppet comes to life and to his dismay, it becomes very mischievous. Geppetto sells his only coat to provide schoolbooks for Pinocchio. However, the rambunctious puppet goes on several adventures, dreading school.
He joins a puppet theater and is almost eaten by the gigantic puppet master Mangiafuoco. Pinocchio lies to get out of the situation, claiming misery and poverty in his family and the puppet master gives him five gold coins. He then meets The Fox and the Cat, two crooks who trick him out of his money, telling him to plant the coins in the ground in order to grow a "money tree". The watchful Blue Fairy, who encourages him to give up his obnoxious ways, saves him from a hanging by the disguised crooks. She gives Pinocchio medicine and when he refuses it, coffin-bearing rabbits dressed as Undertakers appear. Pinocchio immediately consumes the medicine, lying that he wanted to drink it in the first place but that the Fairy would not let him.
When the Blue Fairy asks Pinocchio about the gold coins he had, Pinocchio lies to her and says he lost them, causing his nose to grow. The Blue Fairy, knowing of his constant fibbing, tells him that there are two types of lies: those with short legs and those with long noses. Pinocchio promises the Fairy that from there on he will try his best to be good.
Pinocchio encounters the Fox and the Cat again who remind him of digging his coins outside of Catchfools. While Pinocchio is away waiting for the tree to grow, the Fox and the Cat dig up the coins and run off. Pinocchio finds that the coins have been dug up as the Talking Cricket is told about it. Pinocchio brings up the Fox and the Cat's crimes to a gorilla judge and is sentenced to months in jail for crimes of foolishness. While in jail, he meets Lucignolo, another truant thief who is let out soon after Pinocchio is admitted in. A few months later as part of a celebration for the birth of an emperor's son, he is set free. He stumbles across the grave of the Blue Fairy, who supposedly died of grief because of his antics. A Dove tells Pinocchio that she has seen his father heading out to see to look for him. After nearly drowning in the ocean in an attempt to save his father, he washes up on the shore of a city where he discovers that the Blue Fairy has faked her death in order to forgive Pinocchio.
Once again starting anew, he is on his way to school when he gets into a fight with his schoolmates. One of them tries to throw a book at him, but when he ducks the book hits his classmate Eugenio instead, who is knocked unconscious. Thinking that he is dead, the others run away leaving Pinocchio at the scene. After being arrested by a carabineer and escaping, he joins Lucignolo in a trip to "Fun Forever Land", where all is play and no work or school. There, boys turn into donkeys who are sold for hard labor.
Pinocchio escapes and, wanting to make up for his mischievous ways, agrees to work at a farm. Later, he finds Lucignolo dying in a stable on the farm. Trying to reunite with his father, he is swallowed by a Shark and together they escape from its belly. As a reward for his efforts to strive for moral prudence, the Blue Fairy finally reforms Pinocchio and he becomes a real boy. The film ends with Pinocchio going to school at last, while his shadow, still in the shape of a puppet, chases a butterfly into the hills of the countryside, a lasting memory of his adventures.
Original Italian cast
- Roberto Benigni - Pinocchio
- Nicoletta Braschi - Blue Fairy
- Carlo Giuffrè - Geppetto
- Pepe Barra - Talking Cricket
- Bruno Arena - The Fox
- Max Cavallari - The Cat
- Kim Rossi Stuart - Lucignolo
- Giorgio Ariani - Host of the Gambero Rosso
- Mino Bellei - Medoro
- Sandro Dori - Medoro's Owner
- Remo Masini - Schoolmaster
- Alessandro Bergonzoni - Ringmaster
- Luis Molteni - Omino di Burro
- Corrado Pani - Giudice
- Vincenzo Cerami - Man with the Mustache
- Tommaso Bianco - Pulcinella
- Franco Iavarone - Mangiafuoco
- Giorgio Noè - Boy #1
- Marco Tullio Cao - Carabiniere #3
- Dodo Otrecolli - Boy #3
English voice-dubbing cast
- Breckin Meyer - Pinocchio
- David Suchet - Geppetto, Judge, Narrator
- Glenn Close - Blue Fairy
- John Cleese - Talking Cricket
- James Belushi - Farmer George
- Topher Grace - Leonardo
- Eddie Griffin - The Cat
- Eric Idle - Medoro
- Kevin James - Mangiafuoco/The Puppeteer
- Queen Latifah - Dove
- Cheech Marin - The Fox
- Regis Philbin - Ringmaster
- Tony Abatemarco - Harlequin
- Tom Amundsen - Pulcinella
- Stephen Apostolina - Eugenio
- Erik Bergmann - Butterman
- Steve Bulen - First Doctor
- David Coburn - Carabiniere #1, Carabiniere #3, Undertaker Rabbit, Warder
- Rufus Collins - Carabiniere #2, Carabiniere #4
- Peter Gerety - Farmer, Mustache Man
- Nicholas Guest - Second Doctor
- Ray Iannicelli - Furcoat Man
- Steve Mellor - Fisherman
- Harry Murphy - Innkeeper
- Nicole Orth-Pallavicini - Lady with the Pitchers
- Bob Papenbrook - Pantalone
North American release
In the United States and Canada, Miramax released the film on Christmas Day with no advance screening. Miramax said that this is because they needed to do post-production looping to insert the English dub for its English-speaking release. Edward Guthmann, a film reviewer for the San Francisco Chronicle, thought that this was because Miramax knew the film would be not well-received, and sought to have it released before critics placed their opinions in the media. However, it was released in theaters again, in its original format on February 7, 2003 for a limited time screening in North America.
To go along with the release of the film the fast food restaurant, McDonald's sold toys with their happy meals that each resembled a character of the film, these being Pinocchio, Geppetto, The Blue Fairy, Medoro, The Cat, and The Cricket.
In the United States, Pinocchio was panned by critics. Rotten Tomatoes ranked the English-language version of the film third on their list of the 100 worst-reviewed films of the 2000s, with it receiving a 0% approval rating from critics. The English-dubbed version was nominated for six Razzie Awards (the only time a foreign-language film received the "honor") including Worst Picture, Worst Director, Worst Screenplay, Worst Remake or Sequel and Worst Screen Couple (Roberto Benigni and Nicoletta Braschi) with Benigni winning the Razzie for Worst Actor. The original Italian version, however, was not so poorly greeted and received six nominations at the David di Donatello Awards, winning two, as well as winning one of the two awards it was nominated for at the Italian National Syndicate of Film Journalists.
- Guthmann, Edward. "Benigni's 'Pinocchio' -- so much deadwood". San Francisco Chronicle. December 28, 2002. Retrieved on September 25, 2009.
- "The Worst of the Worst Pictures". Rotten Tomatoes. Archived from the original on 2008-02-26. Retrieved 2008-03-08.
- "Entire RAZZIE History, Year-by-Year: 1980–2008". The Golden Raspberry Award Foundation.