Directed by Francesca Archibugi.
Starring Marcello Mastroianni, Sandrine Bonnaire.
Italian dialogues, with English subtitles
Archibugi's latest film, Lezioni di volo - Flying Lessons, will be presented on closing night, November 18, at NICE - New Italian Cinema, Embarcadero Theaters, San Francisco
Towards Evening, a bittersweet and delightful trip back to 1977 Rome, confirms the promise of 29-year-old director Francesca Archibugi. She proves she is a subtle and ambitious storyteller, successful in balancing social and private sentiments and shifting gears from comic to tragic to banal. Set during the social upheavals of the mid-1970s, the film tells the story of a middle-aged communist university professor (Marcello Mastroianni, now firmly established as the grandfather of Italian cinema), who prefers to kill time in his garden in an upper-class Rome neighborhood rather than involve himself with the dissenting students and their political struggles. His sheltered life is disrupted by the arrival of his son's five-year-old daughter and his girlfriend (Sandrine Bonnaire), a working-class woman who is torn between her anti-bourgeois principles and her yearning for old-fashioned family affection. But the spirit of '77, at the height of the chaotic student movement but before the Red Brigades and terrorism, penetrates into even the most protected homes. With unpretentious visuals from first-time cinematographer Paolo Carnera and disarming performances, in particular by Bonnaire, the film has a freshness and lightness of touch that is a further indication of Archibugi's firm directorial skills.
John Francis Lane, 1992 London Film Festival
Francesca Archibugi studied at the National School of Cinema (Centro Sperimentale di Cinematografia) in Rome and in the early '80s made several short movies and La piccola avventura (The Little Adventure), a documentary feature about disabled children, commissioned by the City of Rome. She started her film career as a screenwriter, debuting in the director's chair in 1987, with Mignon è partita (Mignon Has Come to Stay), which received 5 David di Donatello awards (Best new director, screenplay, lead actress, supporting actor, sound), 2 Silver Ribbons, and the Best New Director award at the San Sebastián International Film Festival. This was followed by Verso sera (Towards Evening, 1990; David di Donatello for Best film and Best supporting actress) and Il grande cocomero (The Great Pumpkin, 1992; David di Donatello for Best film, screenplay, lead actor; Silver Ribbons for Best film, screenplay, production).
She subsequently directed Con gli occhi chiusi (With Closed Eyes, 1994) and L'albero delle pere (Shooting the Moon, 1998), in the official competition at the Venice Film Festival (Golden Osella for Best Cinematography, UCIC and UNICEF awards, Mastroianni Award for Best Actor) and Golden Grolla for Best film. In 2001 it was followed by Domani (Tomorrow) and in 2004 she directed the documentary Gabbiani (Seagulls), an essay on The Seagull by Anton Chekhov. Her latest release is Lezioni di volo (Flying Lessons, 2006) with Giovanna Mezzogiorno and Anna Galiena, presented at NICE - New Italian Cinema in San Francisco on Sunday November 18, 2007.
Adapted and translated from FILM.it
Awards and Festivals:
For more information about the movie (in English, unless indicated):
To receive information about our special events and Italian Movie Nights subscribe to our mailing list sending an E-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org with the word subscribe as Subject.
Go to the IISA Main Page
Last updated November 10, 2007 by Andrea Trave