San Diego Italian Film Festival
Festival Celebrates 5th Year
Thursday, November 3, 2011
Aired 11/3/11 on KPBS Midday Edition.
The San Diego Italian Film Festival kicked off it's 5th year over the weekend and runs through November 12 at the Museum of Photographic Arts. Festival director Victor Laruccia and board member Clarissa Clo discuss the films and the festival.
The San Diego Italian Film Festival kicked off it's 5th year over the weekend and runs through November 12 at the Museum of Photographic Arts. Festival director Victor Laruccia and program director Clarissa Clo discuss the films and the festival.
Since the days of silent film, Italy has brought a passionate realism to the world of moviemaking as well as giving us haunting images that have inspired film makers around the world. This week, we can see some of those images and passion ourselves as the San Diego Italian Film Festival heads into its second week.
"Outside of the United States most governments actually see their culture as a major area to preserve and so they actually create budgets to support the arts," says Laruccia, "So in Italy this is especially true, first of all because of all the historical stuff but also because Italy sees itself as a major enterprise for culture. So they put money into this. And they make movies available through their government agencies around the world. We work with the Instituto Italiano de Cultura in LA."
This year there are fewer films coming from the Instituto but the festival did work with them for the opening 4-day showcase of Neo-realist classics, all shown on 35mm prints from Italy.
Italian film can sometimes be very patriarchal but Clo says there are some strong women this year.
"There are strong women portrayed in films like 'The First Beautiful Thing,' 'L'uomo che verrà,' 'Basilicata Coast to Coast,' and 'Mar Nero' because there are strong actresses involved in these films. The only female filmmaker is Giovanna Taviani with her documentary 'Fughe e approdi.'"
SDIFF looks to the involvement of women in documentaries and on Sunday at SDSU's Little Theater they will present a special journal issue of Studies in Documentary Film that Clo has co-edited on contemporary Italian documentary film.
Victor Laruccia, Executive director, San Diego Italian Film Festival.
Clarissa Clo, SDIFF Board Member and Program Director, and Associate Professor of Italian and European Studies at SDSU.