THE NIGHT OF THE SHOOTING STARS (1982)
In Italy, August 10 is the Night of San Lorenzo, the night of the shooting stars, when dreams come true. In this moving and highly acclaimed drama, one of the highest-grossing Italian language films in U.S. history and a multiple award winner at Cannes, a woman tells her child about a similar night in 1944, when she was six years old, and the residents of her small Tuscan town defied their Nazi occupiers. Film historian Mira Liehm called THE NIGHT OF THE SHOOTING STARS “a poetic epic of overwhelming terror and beauty.” The film, originally released in the U.S. in 1983, was named by the National Society of Film Critics best film of the year and the Tavianis the best directors.
“Rigorous and eloquent, effortlessly poetic, Kaos is the Tavianis at their best.
– The New York Times
Magic, drama, misery and hope are given life in KAOS, a compelling film featuring five tales adapted from short stories by the great Italian playwright Luigi Pirandello, originally released domestically in 1985. In “The Other Son,” set in 19th-century Sicily, a woman waits for word from two sons who have emigrated to America but ignores the son still at home. “Moon Sickness” involves a yo ung newlywed feeling the strange effects of the full moon. In “The Jar,” a craftsman hired by a feudal landowner to repair a giant olive jar gets stuck inside it, and in “Requiem,” villagers struggle to bury their dead. An epilogue has Pirandello himself (Omero Antonutti) chatting with his mother about a story he’d like to write. Imbued with a serene, sympathetic vision of mankind, KAOS, the winner of David di Donatello Awards in Italy for Best Screenplay and Best Producer and awarded Best Screenplay by the Italian National Syndicate of Film Journalists, transcends the boundaries of time.
“A sweeping and sensuous fable … combines a confident narrative drive
with visual style that drinks in the beauty of the rolling Tuscan landscape”
– The New York Times
PADRE PADRONE (1993)
The Benedetti family has been haunted by a curse for generations. On a long drive to visit their grandfather, Luigi Benedetti tells his children the mysterious story of their ancestors – a story filled with forbidden love, passion and romance. Touching on the undeniable forces of time and place, the Taviani drama unfolds as a 200-year-old curse comes to rich life: after a young woman, Fiorile (Galatea Ranzi), learns that her own brother (Claudio Bigagli) is guilty of the crime for which her lover (Michael Vartan of TV’s “Alias”) was executed; she places a curse on her brother’s future descendants. FIORILE, a 1994 U.S. theatrical release was nominated for the top prize, the Palme d’Or, at the Cannes Film Festival and It was the Best Production Design winner at the David di Donatello Awards. Said The Austin Chronicle, “as master storytellers of Italian cinema, the Taviani brothers continue to do what they do best.”
Brash and opinionated retiree Paulette (Bernadette Lafont) lives alone in a housing project on the outskirts of Paris. One evening, upon observing some mysterious dealings outside her building, Paulette discovers a surprising way to supplement her meager pension – an unlikely but successful career selling cannabis.
Directed by: Jerome Enrico
Starring: Bernadette Lafont, Carmen Maura
Run time: 87 min