Administrator, The (2013): Marra’s Celebrating and Critiquing Naples


Vincenzo Marra, Italy, 2013, 83m

In “The Administraor, ” the lively and absorbing fifth installment in a series of documentaries celebrating his native Naples, Vincenzo Marra centers on the life of Umberto Montella, a building administrator whose job is as much about management as about therapy.

An effortless arbiter of the passionate conflicts that arise among tenants, the Quixotic Montella leads us in and out of the homes of his larger-than-life clients, rich and poor Neapolitans whose lives illuminate the city’s volatile moods.

Sporadically funny and always poignant, these profoundly human stories flow in and out of one another with remarkable ease and natural rhythm.

While the tales, characters, and places are specific to Napoli, they offer broader perspective into Italy as a society deeply mired in all kinds of crises.





Happy to Be Different (Felice chi è diverso)

Gianni Amelio, Italy, 2014,93m

In Italian with English subtitles

A moving and enlightening work of oral history, Gianni Amelio’s new documentary is a chronicle of gay life in Italy from the fall of Fascism through the early 1980s. Amelio combines interviews with a wide range of older gay Italian men (including Pasolini muse Ninetto Davoli), newsreel footage, and clips from “educational” films warning against homosexuality, and in the process reveals a profound gap between the subjects’ firsthand experiences and the Italian media’s representations of them. The resulting film is a deeply personal account of the advent of gay culture amid the ruins of Mussolini’s Italy and the eternally poignant story of how persecuted individuals developed pragmatic ways to attain everyday happiness.

Tuesday, June 10, 9:00pm

Wednesday, June 11, 4:00pm


The Human Factor (La variabile umana)

Bruno Oliviero, Italy, 2013, DCP, 82m

Italian with English subtitles

Matters get very complicated for chief inspector Monaco (Silvio Orlando) after the murder of a high-profile member of Milan’s seedy nightlife. He is a widower with a teenage daughter, and, one night, all his neglected personal issues seem to catch up with him, forcing him out of the slump he’s been in since the death of his wife. Rendered darkly beautiful as a noir setting, Milan is the electric backdrop for this detective story that delves as much into the intimate life of one man and his daughter as into this elegant city’s underworlds. In his fiction debut, Olivierio’s extensive documentary experience is palpable in his portrait of Milan—a character in itself—as well as in the vivid and telling details with which he characterize its inhabitants.

Thursday, June 5, 4:00pm

Friday, June 6, 9:30pm


U.S. Premiere

I Can Quit Whenever I Want (Smetto quando voglio)

Sydney Sibilia, Italy, 2014, 100m

Italian with English subtitles

A band of brilliant unemployed and underemployed academics—two Latinists, a chemist, a neurobiologist, an anthropologist, and an economist—turn to a life of crime in order to survive. Deftly assimilating such influences as Breaking Bad and Trainspotting, this biting parody on the plight of the Italian middle class in the aftermath of the economic crisis boasts a fast pace, witty dialogue, and a terrific cast. A debut to watch from Salerno-native Sibilia, the film was a resounding commercial and critical hit when released in Italy earlier this year.

Friday, June 6, 3:30pm (Q&A with actress Valeria Solarino)

Sunday, June 8, 9:00pm (Q&A with actress Valeria Solarino)


U.S. Premiere

L’Intrepido: A Lonely Hero

Gianni Amelio, Italy, 2013, DCP, 104m

Italian with English Subtitles

Amelio follows his 2011 Camus adaptation, The First Man, with a deadpan parable about a small everyday hero from Milan who contends with the unemployment crisis in a very particular way: he’s a “professional” substitute worker, skilled and knowledgeable enough to replace anyone in any job. True to his name, Antonio Pane is as good and essential as bread. Whether working as a train conductor, fishmonger, tailor, street sweeper, or bricklayer, he approaches the country’s instability with a deep moral consistency as he reinvents himself everyday. Amelio wrote this film especially for actor Antonio Albanese, who personifies the film’s dark humor and underlying sense of hope. An Emerging Pictures release.

Monday, June 5, 9:15pm  

Tuesday, June 10, 6:30pm


U.S. Premiere

Long Live Freedom (Viva la libertà)

Roberto Andò, Italy, 2013, DCP, 93m

Italian with English Subtitles

Enrico Oliveri (a brilliant Toni Servillo) is a seasoned center-left politician and president of the opposition who realizes that the decline of his party is inevitable. As the polls announce he will lose dramatically in the upcoming elections, he falls into a profound existential crisis and disappears. We later learn that he has fled to Paris and is hiding out at the home of his ex-girlfriend Danielle (Valeria Bruni Tedeschi). While his colleagues panic, his top aide (Valerio Mastandrea) discovers that Enrico has a twin brother living in a psychiatric institution. What at first seems like a crazy plan soon proves to be their only solution. A scathing critique of Italian political dynamics, Andò’s film is also a pulsating thriller with great comic moments that brings together some of the most talented actors working in Italy today.

Friday, June 6, 1:00pm (Q&A with Roberto Andò)

Saturday, June 7, 9:00pm (Q&A with Roberto Andò)


U.S. Premiere

The Mafia Only Kills in Summer (La mafia uccide solo d’estate)

Pierfrancesco Diliberto, Italy, 2013, DCP, 89m

Italian with English subtitles                                                                  

Pierfrancesco Diliberto (a renowned TV host and political comedian, better known as Pif) wrote, directed, and stars in this subversive, irreverent feature debut about Arturo, a young boy whose obsession with the Mafia’s casual presence in his city surpasses even his passion for Flora, the beautiful schoolmate who remains his main love interest until adulthood. Pifuses Arturo’s unrequited love story as the vehicle to narrate the most tragic events in Italy’s recent history, starting with the Cosa Nostra’s criminal actions in Sicily in the ’70s, which soon spread through the country (encompassing the barbaric murder of judges Falcone and Borsellino, an event that Pif handles with astounding boldness). Winner of the Audience Award at the Torino Film Festival, Mafia is a brave and intelligent dark comedy with a powerful message.

Saturday, June 7, 3:30pm (Q&A with Pierfrancesco Diliberto aka Pif)

Thursday, June 12, 4:00pm (Q&A with Pierfrancesco Diliberto aka Pif)


Quiet Bliss (In grazia di Dio)

Edoardo Winspeare, Italy, 2014, 127m

In Italian with English subtitles

Three generations of women seek refuge in their family’s Salento olive grove after their small textile business collapses in Winspeare’s warm and vibrant drama. Against the backdrop of a radiant southern Italian landscape, Winspeare’s characters—serene Salvatrice (Anna Boccadamo), hardened Adele (Celeste Casciaro), loudmouthed Ina (Laura Licchetta), and aspiring thespian Maria Conchetta (Barbara De Matteis)—revive their lives in the wake of economic catastrophe. Turning to a back-to-basics existence as a means of healing the wounds wrought by the recession, they undergo transformations that the director renders with equal parts pathos, insight, and humor.

Saturday, June 7, 6:00pm (Q&A with Edoardo Winspeare)

Monday, June 9, 1:00pm (Q&A with Edoardo Winspeare)


U.S. Premiere

The Referee (L’arbitro)

Paolo Zucca, Italy/Argentina, 2013, 96m

Italian with English subtitles

Sardinian third-league soccer team Atletico Pabarile is suddenly winning every match of the season, after years of losing consistently to Montecrastu, the team led by cocky and abusive landowner Brai. The return of soccer wizard Matzutzi from a sojourn in Argentina has turned the team of farmers into unexpected champions—and now it feels like anything is possible. Enter Cruciani (a great Stefano Accorsi), a young referee greedily climbing his way to the top, and two cousins playing for Montecrastu who are involved in an escalating conflict about archaic sheep-breeding codes in Sardinia. These disparate plots come together explosively in the lush black-and-white world of Zucca’s slyly funny and utterly distinctive first feature.

Tuesday, June 10, 4:00pm

Wednesday, June 11, 9:00pm


U.S. Premiere

Sacro GRA

Gianfranco Rosi, Italy/France, 2013, DCP, 93m

Italian with English subtitles

The first documentary to win the Golden Lion for Best Film at the Venice Film Festival, the latest from Gianfranco Rosi (El Sicario, Room 164 and Below Sea Level), reveals the sheer diversity of life bubbling around the margins of Rome’s Grande Raccordo Anulare, the 43.5-mile highway that encircles the city, the longest in all of Italy. The absorbing and often moving individual portraits that emerge—an ambulance driver caring for his ailing mother, a scientist studying palm trees ravaged by beetles, an eel fisherman nostalgic for old traditions—give visibility and a human face to the places Sacro GRA drivers pass through but never see, while exposing the city’s striking contradictions. Inspired in part by Italo Calvino’s novel Invisible Cities, Rosi’s captivating chorale plunges the viewer into this paradoxical reality, allowing us a more direct, even sensorial experience of life in the shadow of progress.

Sunday, June 8, 6:30pm Q&A with Gianfranco Rosi)

Monday, June 9, 4:00pm (Q&A with Gianfranco Rosi)


U.S. Premiere

Small Homeland (Piccola Patria)

Alessandro Rossetto, Italy, 2013, DCP,111m

Italian with English subtitles

Best friends Luisa and Renata long above all else to leave their stifling provincial town in northeastern Italy, where tensions between locals and immigrants are forever threatening to boil over. They work as maids in a hotel but supplement their income with sexual trysts, sometimes assisted by Luisa’s Albanian boyfriend, and hatch a blackmail scheme that fails to play out as expected. The rhythms of daily life in this border zone—where city meets countryside—are captured in vivid detail in the highly promising fiction debut by Rossetto, an experienced documentarian working mainly with nonprofessional actors.

Sunday, June 8, 3:30pm  (Q&A with Alessandro Rossetto)

Thursday, June 12, 8:45pm


U.S. Premiere

South Is Nothing (Il Sud e niente)

Fabio Mollo, Italy, 2013, DCP, 86m

Italian with English subtitles

Grazia was 12 years old when she was told by her widower father that her beloved older brother Pietro had died, and never spoken a word since. Now a tomboyish 18, after one of her regular arguments with her father, Grazia flees to the seaside and into the water, where she has an otherworldly experience and thinks she sees her brother. Thus begins her quest to discover another truth, not only about her lost sibling but also about herself. This poised and striking debut by the young Mollo, who shot this film in the Reggio Calabria village where he grew up, features a remarkable central performance by the young Miriam Karlkvist.

Sunday, June 8, 1:00pm

Monday, June 9, 9:00pm


U.S. Premiere

A Street in Palermo (Via Castellana Bandiera)

Emma Dante, Italy, 2013, DCP, 92m

Italian with English subtitles

Based on her own novel, Emma Dante’s first feature is set in Palermo and shot almost entirely in a narrow alleyway in a run-down neighborhood. On a hot Sunday afternoon, three women are caught in what turns out to be a tragic confrontation. Rosa (Dante) and her partner, Clara (Alba Rohrwacher), have just driven in from Milan and are on their way to a friend’s wedding. As they turn onto Via Castellana Bandiera, they find the Calafiore family jammed into a car driven by Samira (Elena Cotta), a mule-headed Sicilian of Albanian descent. Both drivers stubbornly refuse to back up, as tensions escalate and the neighborhood looks on. An accomplished theater director, Dante includes some knowing nods to spaghetti Westerns and genre conventions in her ambitious film debut, and coaxes formidable performances from her skilled cast (Cotta won the Best Actress Award at the Venice Film Festival).

Wednesday, June 11, 6:30pm

Thursday, June 12, 1:30pm


U.S. Premiere


Alberto Fasulo, Italy/Croatia, 2013, 83m

Italian with English Subtitles

The first Italian film to win the top prize at the Rome Film Festival, Fasulo’s striking fiction debut follows Branko (played by Branko Zavrsan, from the Oscar-winning No Man’s Land), a former teacher from Bosnia who takes a job driving a tractor trailer (“tir”) through Europe. A native of Friuli with a documentary background, Fasulo immerses the viewer in the experience of the trucker on the road—the sounds, the landscape, and the longing for company (Branko’s phone conversations with his wife are particularly poignant). Part of a growing movement of Italian filmmakers exploring hybrid combinations of documentary and fiction, Fasulo uses both professional actors and real truck drivers, and his approach yields both an intimate connection to his characters and an evocative sense of place.

Saturday, June 7, 1:00pm

Thursday, June 12, 6:30pm (Q&A with Alberto Fasulo)