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Cinema Junkie by Beth Accomando

Light of my eyes
Light of My Eyes screens free at MoPA (Film Movement)

Last October the San Diego Italian Film Festival made its debut and has been busy ever since bringing Italian film to San Diego. Based on the crowds at the festival, I'd say there's an audience that's ravenous for Italian cinema even if the titles are not the newest. For what they are calling a "warm-up" to their second festival in October, the San Diego Italian Film Festival has been running a short series of films at the Museum of Photographic Arts . For the second film in the series (sorry I missed highlighting the first) they are reaching back to 2001 for Giuseppe Piccioni's Luce dei Miei Occhi/Light of My Eyes (screening Thursday April 3 at 7pm at the MoPA). The film never received a theatrical release here in the U.S. and Piccioni is not a well known name here. His Not of This World (involving the owner of a dry cleaner, a nun and an abandoned baby) is the only film of his that appeared to have any kind of limited release here in the U.S. So this is a rare opportunity to sample this director's work.

Light of My Eyes centers on Antonio (Luigi Lo Cascio), a young chauffeur who prides himself on his professionalism, promptness, and courtesy. He also favors pulp science fiction novels that fuel his vivid imagination. Then a near-accident introduces him to Maria (Sandra Ceccarelli), a single mother struggling to keep her small business alive and to maintain custody her daughter. Maria and Antonio slowly come together as Antonio tries to take care of Maria and her daughter.

Next up for the San Diego Italian Film Festival will be the more familiar, award-winning film, Cinema Paradiso on Thursday May 8. For more information you can email the festival at SDItFF@gmail.com.

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