Natale polemico

December 29, 2009 at 9:05 pm (Crisis/Rebirth)

Ernesto Galli della Loggia, the Corriere journalist who has triggered earlier debates in the Italian press, (see ‘Media Responses’) caused some controversy on Christmas eve with this article. The writer is very critical of the latest in the ‘Natale a…’ series (Natale a Beverly Hills), labeling it ‘una serie ininterrotta di volgarità condite di parolacce: una specie di lunga scritta oscena sulla parete del cesso d’una stazione’, a film which seemingly represents contemporary Italian society. More offensive, the critic claims, is that the film is qualified as ‘d’interesse culturale e nazionale’, and therefore has its taxes waved: this is typically awarded to ‘film d’essai’, and should typically be used to create a space for emerging cinemas.

The article has already triggered a couple of responses: Fini’s FareFuturo foundation has attempted a boycott of the film (though it is currently at the top of the box office, having made some €3.4 million), and, in an interview in the Corriere, one of the lead stars, Christian De Sica, defends the film: building on the words of the Ministro dei Beni e delle Attività Culturali (Sandro Bondi) has pointed out that the funding of the film has functioned as more of an investment. The profits will (somehow) be returned to the state for further application to emergent film

Once again the theme of the conference seems to be right at the middle of this debate: the Cinepanettone is, by now, a fairly fundamental player within the field of Italian cinema, yet one which is extremely criticized. Yet when it is repeatedly successful, making some €20 million each year, it seems difficult to simply ignore it, an elephant in the room, as a major section of the new face of the national cinema. I think the Guardian website, who have reported this story here, put it in the most relevant/interesting terms: ‘this lowbrow yuletide tale has sparked an unholy row in the nation of Federico Fellini and Roberto Rossellini’. Once again, the maestri/fathers of Italian film are casting a long shadow which is difficult to escape.


Permalink Leave a Comment


December 23, 2009 at 7:14 pm (Conference Information)

The lovely folks over at Cinemonitor, in Rome, in collaboration with Mariarita have published an article about the conference, which can be accessed here.

Check it out!

Mariarita & Dom

Permalink Leave a Comment

Programme, Registration

December 23, 2009 at 7:04 pm (Conference Information, Delegate Information)

Registration for the conference is now open, and the relevant file can be accessed on the main conference website, here.

We are also excited to announce a provisional programme for the event, which is as follows:

Da Sodoma a Gomorra: Framing Crisis and Rebirth in Italian Cinema (from the 1970s to the 2000s)
Provisional Programme

Friday 22nd January
10-11 Registration and coffee (graduate space)
Introduction and Welcome: (graduate space) Head of Department Dr. Jennifer Burns, with Mariarita Martino Grisa’ & Dom Holdaway

11-12.30 Parallel Session
1a. Modes of Rebirth:  Genre and popular cinema (graduate space) (Chair: tbc)
Uva, Christian – Italia Calibro 38
Delon, Nicoletta – Nostalgia & the 1970s Poliziesco: The Anatomy of the Myth and its Nation
Marklund, Anders – Reassuring Relationships? Romance and Family according to Popular Italian Cinema since the Millennium

1.b Nostalgia and Ambiguity: Between History & Memory (H403) (Chair:tbc)
Marchetti, Silvia – Italian (and “Other”) Cinema and the Shoah: Rebirth or Identity Crisis?
Caoduro, Elena – Nostalgia Canaglia: The Role of the Melancholic dimension in in Recent Italian Historical Films
Zamboni, Camilla – From Man to Musselman: Disruption Through Liminality in Lina Wertmuller’s Seven Beauties

12.30-1.30 lunch (graduate space)

1.30-2.30 Parallel session
2a. Languages of Psychoanalysis in Contemporary Cinema (H545) (Chair: Mariarita Martino Grisa’)
Carroli, Piera – ‘La sconosciuta’: Irena’s Vengeance and Reclaim
Marini, Alessandro – Ossessione e modernità in ‘Primo amore’ di Matteo Garrone

2b. Per ridere sul serio: Comedy and denuncia (H403) (Chair: Dom Holdaway)
Watters, Clare – ‘Fascisti su Marte’: Parodying the Past and Present
D’Amelio, Maria Elena – Virzì e la favola nera.

2.30-3.30 Keynote
3. Prof. Vito Zagarrio (H058)

3.30-4.00 Break – tea/coffee

4.00-5.30 Plenary session
4. Italian cinema: New Directions & Applications (H058) (Chair tbc)
The Mission of Cinemonitor – Electronic Link with ‘La Sapienza’.
Ceraolo, Francesco – Vittorio Storaro e l’Univisium. Una possibile nuova frontiera italiana per il cinema digitale
Serio, Adalgisa – “ Camera! Action: the tutor as facilitator”
5.30-6.30 drinks (Humanities Concourse)
6.30.  film screening (tbc)

9.00-9.30 Registration/Coffee

9.30-11.00 Parallel session
5a. Adjusting the Focus: Pan-European Perceptions of Italy (H 545) (Chair: TBC)
Douglas, James – Configuring Alterity Migrations: A Third Cinema Approach in Gianni Amelio’s  ‘Lamerica’
Keating, Abigail – Italian Film in the Light of Transnationalism: Aesthetics, Representation, Space
Nastri, Manuela – Dalla lotta di classe all’autocrazia di una classe suprema. Il concetto di italianità all’estero, analisi di alcuni film presentati nell’ultimo decennio al festival di Cannes.

5b. The Real, Reality, Realisms (H052) (Chair: TBC)
Leonardo, Laura – ‘Crisis and re-birth or re-birth and crisis: Italian neo-neorealism.’
Calabretta-Sajder, Ryan – (title TBC)
Cori,Emiliano – Greek Tragedy, Screen Adaptation and Contemporary Reality: ‘Luna rossa’ by Antonio Capuano
11.00-11.30 coffee (Humanities Concourse)

11.30 – 1.00 Plenary session
6. Modes and Questions of impegno (H 545) (Chair: Jennifer Burns)
Antonello, Pier Paolo – Reading ‘Impegno’ (and Realism) Against the Grain: From Moretti to Sorrentino
D’Onofrio, Emanuele – Film Composers & Impegno in Contemporary Italian Cinema
Bieberstein, Rada – How to Recover the Real – Italian Cinema since the 1990s

1.00-2.00 lunch (graduate space)

2.00-3.30 Plenary session
7. Constructing Cinematic Masculinities since the 1980s (H052) (Chair: tbc)
O’Healy, Áine – Masculinity, Abjection, and the Melancholic Autore: Portraits of the Filmmaker in Crisis
Pitt, Roger – ‘È difficile diventare grandi in Italia!’: The Traumas of Becoming in Nanni Moretti’s La stanza del figlio (2001)
O’Rawe, Catherine – Masculinity, Otherness and the Cinema of ‘Impegno’

3.30-4 tea/coffee

4.00-5.30 Keynote
8. BONDANELLA (Pauline Small as respondent) (H052)

5.30-6.30 Drinks (Humanities Concourse)

7.30 dinner (Scarman House)

Sunday 24th January
9.00-9.30 Registration/Coffee

9.30-11.00  Plenary session

9a. The Gendered Pro-Filmic Space: Possession, Confinement, Domesticity  (H545)
Andrews, Eleanor – Whose Place is it Anyway? Gendered Spaces in the work of Nanni Moretti
Ballarotti, Valeria – Tutta casa e casino: Female Confinement in two Italian Fascist-themes Films from the 1970s.
Baschiera, Stefano – Buongiorno notte: a petit bourgeois house in via Gradoli

9b. Re-evaluating Auteurist Art: Psychoanalytic Strains (H403) (Chair: Mariarita Martino Grisa’)
Riccobono, Riccobono, Rossella – Crisi, morte e rinascita di una poetica cinematografica dell’ ’anima’: da 8e1/2 di Federico Fellini a Il caimano di Nanni Moretti.
Benincasa, Fabio – Marco Bellocchio: decadenza e rinascita di un film-maker “ribelle”
Russo, Paolo – “What power does to the human body”: Sadism and pornography in Pasolini’s Salò or the 120 Days of Sodom

11-11.30 coffee (graduate space)

11.30-1.00 Parallel session
10a. Staging the Crisis from the Regional to the Global  (H545) (Chair: tbc)
Marrone, Gaetana – Crisis Italian Style: Signs of Loss, Signs of Hope in
Rosi’s ‘Diario napoletano’.
St. Ours, Kathryn – The Sacred and the scatological, From Pasolini to Ciprì and Maresco
Winkler, Daniel – Glocalizing Italian Cinema: Vincenzo Marra & Roberta Torre

10b. Investigating the other: Italian Migration Cinema (H403) (Chair: tbc)
Maraschin, Donatella – Il cinema del metissage in Italia
Molinterno, Gino – Dancing for Identity in Andrea Barzini’s Passo a due (2005)
Schrader, Sabine – La fine dei sogni bucolici ovvero “Dicono che vengono gli albanesi”: E l’aura fai son vir (2005)
1.00-2.00 lunch (graduate space)

2.00- 2.30 Plenary session
11. Prof. Small, Pauline – The new Italian film history (H545) (Chair: tbc)

2.30-4.00/5.00 12. Closing panel discussion (grad space)
with Dr. Guido Bonsaver, Dr. Alan O’Leary, Dr. Catherine O’Rawe & Dr. Fabio Vighi (H545)  (Chair: tbc)

Please note: this programme is likely to undergo some changes before the final version is published, in January 2010.

Permalink Leave a Comment