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New Zealand's Cinema Italiano Festival Is Back for 2022 to Heighten Your European Holiday Cravings

This year's festival is touring a 22-movie lineup of Italian flicks — overseas fest favourites, stunning thrillers, moving dramas and stone-cold classics included.
By Sarah Ward
June 29, 2022
By Sarah Ward
June 29, 2022

When it's winter in Aotearoa, it's summer in Europe — and if you weren't already wishing you'd ditched the cold for a far-flung holiday, you might after a trip to the cinema. New Zealand's Cinema Italiano Festival is back, touring the country from June 2022 through to January 2023. And if watching 22 new and classic Italian flicks doesn't give you big holiday cravings, nothing will.

Screening in Auckland now until Wednesday, July 6, and also heading to Wellington from Wednesday, November 2–Thursday, November 17, this year's Cinema Italiano Festival isn't short on highlights. One key must-see: The Ties. Starring Alba Rohrwacher (Happy as Lazzaro) and Luigi Lo Cascio (Human Capital), and helmed by Daniele Luchetti (La Nostra Vita, My Brother is an Only Child), this moving film follows a couple's tumultuous romance over the course of decades. It heads to NZ after opening the 2020 Venice Film Festival, and becoming the first Italian movie in more than a decade to do the latter.

Elsewhere, festival highlights include 2021 Cannes Film Festival Director's Fortnight winner To Chiara, about a 15-year-old who discovers her father might have criminal ties; Nanni Moretti's Three Floors, which is set across a Rome apartment block; and wonderful documentary The Truffle Hunters — which, yes, is about elderly men and their dogs doing just that in Piemonte in northern Italy.

Or, there's also Padrenostro, which spins a 70s-era crime drama from the perspective of Roman police chief's son, and stems from director Claudio Noce's own story — plus Hidden Away, a biopic about artist Antonio Ligabue; Everything Will Be Alright, about an unsuccessful filmmaker grappling with life's latest chaos; and drama Tigers, about footballer Martin Bengtsson.

Comedy Three Perfect Daughters and the Joe Pantoliano (Bad Boys for Life)-starring From the Vine are on the bill, too. And, skewing retro, the event also boasts Roberto Rossellini's Rome, Open City as part of a three-film retrospective of the director's work that also includes Stromboli and Journey to Italy.

Also looking back: 1968's Buona Sera, Mrs Campbell, with the fest also paying tribute to iconic actor Gina Lollobrigida.

As well as hitting up Auckland and Wellington — after starting in New Plymouth — Cinema Italiano Festival is also headed to Matakana, Whakatane, Tauranga, Taupo, Napier, Havelock North, Palmerston North, Masterton, Wellington, Blenheim, Nelson, Christchurch and Arrowtown, and then to Waiheke Island.

The 2022 Cinema Italiano Festival tours New Zealand until January 2023. For more information and to buy tickets, visit the festival website.

Published on June 29, 2022 by Sarah Ward
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