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In honor of the 30th anniversary of Giuseppe Tornatore’s Cinema Paradiso, Edmond Town Hall Theatre will host two special screenings of the Director’s Cut on Thursday, March 1, at 2 and 7 pm. Tickets are $3 each.
This film is in Italian with English subtitles. It is rated R for some sexual content.
“The director’s cut is more romantic, more emotional and ultimately more satisfying than the teary-eyed original,” New York Times critic Stephen Holden wrote in 2002 about the release of the expanded version of Tornatore’s 1989 release.
Cinema Paradiso is a nostalgic film about a famous filmmaker, Salvatore di Vito (Jacques Perrin), who returns to his hometown in Sicily after cutting ties to family and friends 30 years earlier. The memories of his youth are captivated by the cinema, and tied up with Alfonso (Philippe Noiret), the ironically anti-nostalgic projectionist and stand-in father to Salvatore, while his own serves in the Italian army.
Salvatore’s memories of his teen years are divided between the cinema and his growing infatuation with the new blue-eyed beauty, Elena. Her parents disapprove, of course, striving to separate them for good. Thus, ends the story of Elena in the original 1988 worldwide release.
Cinema Paradiso was ultimately cut down from 185 minutes to roughly 2 hours, especially after its initial unenthusiastic reception in Italy.
“Furious and disheartened, I edited it down even more,’’ Tornatore wrote. ‘’This was the autobiographical film I had waited my whole life to make, and it felt like the failure of my life.”
The last edit completely omitted any closure of the love story, and without it, the message is that we can never go home again. In the 171-minute Director’s Cut, Tornatore conveys that the past can be healed if we return to it.
This “short” version was an unexpected hit at the Cannes International Film Festival, winning a special Jury Prize, and went on to win Best Foreign Film at the Golden Globes and the Academy Awards, as well as several significant awards at BAFTA. Of note, Ennio and Andrea Morricone won a BAFTA award for Best Original Film Score.
Someday Cinema Series Coordinator Jen Rogers said that showing this film “in our beloved, historic Edmond Town Hall theater is so appropriate.
“It’s a love letter to the enchantment of films and the small-town theater,” Ms Rogers added. “Every multiplex feels much the same, but our 88-year-old theater is unique, and is a great place for the community to get together. This film makes me imagine what Newtown would be like if we lost the Edmond Town Hall.”
This film is sponsored by The Toy Tree in Newtown, and Byrd’s Books in Bethel, and presented by Newtown Cultural Arts Commission.
The Someday Cinema Series will continue on Thursday, April 5, with screenings of Field of Dreams (1989).
Visit tiny.cc/SomedayCinema2018 or fb.me/somedaycinemaseries for up-to-date details on the entire series.
Sponsorships are available for several films. Those interested are invited to contact Ms Rogers at firstname.lastname@example.org.