italian contemporary film festival

5 films to see at the Italian Contemporary Film Fest 2012

The Italian Contemporary Film Festival kicks off today (for its inaugural year), and will screen contemporary Italian films from around the world, including shorts, features, documentaries and Woody Allen's latest. With such classic and molto bella films as La Dolce Vita, Cinema Paradiso and La Vita E Bella, the Italians have a foothold on our cinematic culture just as they do when it comes to food, vino and soccer, and this festival brings us the finest of fresh Italian flicks.

Tuesday June 26 / Kryptonite! / TIFF Bell Lightbox / 7PM

In this 2011 coming-of-age story, Peppino Sansone, a sensitive but clumsy nine-year-old boy, lives in a dysfunctional and bizarre family in Naples circa 1973. When his favourite cousin, Gennaro, dies in a bus accident, Peppino uses his imagination to bring Gennaro back to life as a superhero and life coach.

Thursday June 28 / Canadian West Coast / TIFF Bell Lightbox / 8PM

A documentary on Vancouver and British Columbia narrated by Italians might seem like an odd choice at an Italian film festival, but not when you realize that Italians represent the third largest ethnic group living in British Columbia (after Anglo-Saxons and the Chinese). The doc is directed by Cristiano de Florentiis and the screening is free when you purchase a ticket for Anna Teresa e le resistanti

Friday June 29 / Basilicata Coast to Coast / AMC Interchange, Vaughan / 8PM

If you don't mind the drive to Vaughan, you can catch the screening of Rocco Papaleo's heart-warming tribute to the little known region of Italy, Basilicata. The road movie is about a musical group who is making the trek to a music festival on the other side of Basilicata on foot - both as a bonding experience and as a publicity stunt - with a journalist tagging along for the ride. A reception precedes the premiere.

Saturday June 30 / To Rome With Love / TIFF Bell Lightbox / 6PM

Well, it's that time of year again: another Woody Allen film hits the movie houses. In Allen's latest film, he continues his love affair with Europe, and after London, Barcelona and Paris, the nebbish director lands in Rome. The film, which is making its Canadian premiere at the festival, follows the lives of colourful American and Italian characters, with a cast that includes Alec Baldwin, Penelope Cruz, and Roberto "Life is Beautiful" Benigni.

Sunday July 1 / A Flat For Three / TIFF Bell Lightbox / 7PM

In the North American premiere of Carlo Verdone's comedy, three divorced dads are forced to live together since none of them can afford the apartment on their own. Of course, chaos ensues (mainly involving ex-wives and new lovers) and the men have to figure out how to get themselves out of their plight. And when you purchase a ticket for A Flat for Three, you'll get a free pass to the yummy-sounding documentary, Pizza Bagel.

The Italian Contemporary Film Festival runs from June 26 to July 1, with screenings taking place at TIFF Lightbox Theatre, The Royal Theatre and the AMC Interchange in Vaughan. Ticket prices vary, so check out their ticketing page for details.

Film still from To Rome With Love

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