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Italian Political Cinema

Public Life, Imaginary, and Identity in Contemporary Italian Film


Edited By Giancarlo Lombardi and Christian Uva

Despite the powerful anti-political impulses that have pervaded Italian society in recent years, Italian cinema has sustained and renewed its longstanding engagement with questions of politics, both in the narrow definition of the term, and in a wider understanding that takes in reflections on public life, imaginary, and national identity. This book explores these political dimensions of contemporary Italian cinema by looking at three complementary strands: the thematics of contemporary political film from a variety of perspectives; the most prominent directors currently engaged in this filone; and case studies of the films that best represent this engagement. Conceived and edited by two Italian film scholars working in radically different academic settings, Italian Political Cinema brings together a wide array of critical positions and research from Italy, France, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, Canada, and the United States. The tripartite structure and international perspective create a volume that is an accessible entry-point into a subject that continues to attract critical and cultural attention, both inside and outside of academia.


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Acknowledgements ix Prologue 1 Giancarlo Lombardi and Christian Uva Italian Political Cinema: Definitions and Goals 3 Part One: Thematic Approaches 15 Gaetana Marrone Italian Political Cinema: The Early Masters 17 Christian Uva The New Cinema of Political Engagement 31 Nicoletta Marini-Maio Before and After Silvio: A Corpus for Us All 45 Áine O’Healy Bound to Care: Gender, Affect, and Immigrant Labour 57 Anita Angelone Italian Documentaries and Immigration 69 Elena Past Documenting Ecomafia 81 Mary P. Wood Noir Style and Political Cinema 93 vi Alan O’Leary Political/Popular Cinema 107 Vito Zagarrio The ‘Great Beauty’, or Form Is Politics 119 Paolo Russo Gimme (Tax) Shelter: The Politics of the Production System 133 Part Two: The Authors of Politics 149 Ruth Glynn Marco Bellocchio and the ‘New’ Political Cinema 151 Cosetta Gaudenzi Guido Chiesa and Postmodern Impegno 163 Laura Di Bianco Francesca Comencini: Women Outside the Polis 173 Anna Paparcone Marco Tullio Giordana’s Cinema and Its Civil Engagement: Truth Does Not Play Anyone’s Game 185 Marguerite Waller Sabina Guzzanti: Transmediating cinema politico 199 Clarissa Clò Gustav Hofer and Luca Ragazzi’s Trilogy: Comizi d’amore in the Digital Age 213 Simona Bondavalli Daniele Luchetti as Author of Politics? Little Teachers and Modest Lessons 227 vii Marcia Landy Nanni Moretti by Nanni Moretti: The Biopic as Counter-History 239 Claudio Bisoni Paolo Sorrentino: Between Engagement and savoir faire 251 Monica Jansen Daniele Vicari: The Real Is also Human 265 Part Three: Films 277 Nicoletta Marini-Maio Susanna Nicchiarelli’s Cosmonauta: The Space Race, or When Communist Girls Dreamed...

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