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ASU to host local premieres of Italian cinema at film festival

Italian Film Festival USA of Phoenix
April 06, 2015

Arizona State University will host the annual Italian Film Festival USA of Phoenix featuring the local premieres of eight recent, critically acclaimed Italian films, each shown with English subtitles, on April 10, 11 and 18 at the Tempe campus.

Free and open to the public, the event is co-sponsored by the National Italian American Foundation, the Italian Cultural Institute and the School of International Letters and Cultures.

Faculty members from the school's Italian program will be present to entertain audience questions and engage in discussions regarding the intercultural significance of each film. Italian cinema has a strong influence on not only European culture, but on cultures all over the world. As of 2014, Italian films have won 14 Academy Awards for Best Foreign Film – the most of any country.

Although Italy is a country known best for it’s lavish art, history and food, Italian cinema is also a unique attribute of the culture. The Italian cinematic industry began to rise in popularity around 1903. Some common themes of Italian films include romance, drama and comedy. Italian comedies are also known as commedia all'italiana, or "Italian-style comedy." These films usually include satire of common Italian manners and the country’s ever-lasting class struggle.

The 2015 film festival line-up includes:

Friday, April 10

7 p.m., “Fasten Your Seatbelts,” Life Sciences A-Wing 191

Elena and Antonio are not made for each other; they are total opposites, yet they are overwhelmed by a mutual physical attraction. Directed by Ferzan Ozpetek. (Drama, 2014, 110 minutes)

Saturday, April 11

9:30 p.m., “Black Souls," COOR Hall 170

The story of three brothers – the sons of shepherds with ties to the ‘Ndrangheta – and their divided souls. Directed by Francesco Munzi. (Drama, 2014, 103 minutes)

1 p.m., "Song of Napoli," COOR Hall 170

Thanks to his mom, a classically trained pianist lands a job at the police department’s warehouse. But he is called upon to use his musical talents to catch one of the most notorious organized crime leaders. Directed by Antonio Manetti and Marco Manetti. (Comedy, 2014, 114 minutes)

30 p.m., "The Mafia Kills Only in Summer," COOR Hall 170

A tender and amusing love story unfolds between Arturo and Flora in Palermo, while Sicily's most tragic events from the 70s to the 90s take place. Directed by Pierfrancesco Diliberto. (Comedy, 2013, 90 minutes)

Saturday, April 18

9 a.m., "A Golden Boy," COOR Hall 170

Davide is a copywriter whose dream is to pen something beautiful, but he suffers from anxiety and lack of satisfaction. Will he overcome his insecurities and fulfill his dream? Directed by Pupi Avati. (Drama, 2014, 102 minutes)

11 a.m., "The Chair of Happiness," COOR Hall 170

A cosmetologist, a tattoo artist and a priest are rivals at first, then allies, in a hilarious adventure through Northern Italy to find a treasure hidden in a chair. Directed by Carlo Mazzacurati. (Comedy, 2014, 94 minutes)

2 p.m., "Remember Me?" COOR Hall 170

Roberto, a kleptomaniac, and Bea, who suffers from narcolepsy, meet in front of their therapist's office. A determined and comic courtship begins between the two. Can Roberto win over Bea? Directed by Rolando Ravello. (Comedy, 2014, 91 minutes)

4 p.m., "See You Tomorrow," COOR Hall 170

Marcello is constantly searching for a big break, but his get-rich schemes always end in failure. One day he reads of a small town that is inhabited only by ultra-octogenarians and concocts a surefire plan. Directed by Andrea Zaccariello. (Comedy, 2013, 103 minutes)

The School of International Letters and Cultures, an academic unit of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, offers a major and minor in Italian language and culture. The school also leads three faculty-directed summer programs to Italy each year, "Florence Summer Program," "Classics in Naples" and "Italian Language in San Severino Marche."

Written by Allie Bice, School of International Letters and Cultures communications aide,.