Italian Oscar-winner to make ‘Berlusconi: The Movie’

Ocsar-winning Italian director Paolo Sorrentino is set to make a film about former Italian Prime Minister, Silvio Berlusconi.

Italian Oscar-winner to make 'Berlusconi: The Movie'
Paolo Sorrentino (R) will make a Berlusconi (L) film next year. Photos: AFP

Sorrentino made the announcement while speaking to U.S Entertainment magazine Variety.

The 46-year-old Neapolitan director explained he was still working on the script for the Italian-language film, which will be shot next summer.

Sorrentino revealed the film's working title was 'Loro' – meaning 'they' or 'them' in Italian – but gave no hints as to which aspects of Berlusconi's life the film would focus on.

The former prime minister's life is a treasure trove of potential plots for a silver-screen epic.

From his stratospheric rise from cruise ship crooner to billionaire media mogul and prime minister, to accusations of mafia connections and reports of all night 'bunga-bunga' sex parties at his villa in Arcore, Berlusconi is one of the most controversial figures of recent political history.

In Sorrentino, Berlusconi's story is in the hands of one of the brightest stars in global cinema.

Since winning the Best Foreign Language Film Oscar for his 2013 film 'The Great Beauty', Sorrentino's stock has continued to rise.

His 2015 English-language film 'Youth', starring Michael Caine, scooped the Palme d'Or at last year's Cannes Film Festival and his new ten-part series, 'The Young Pope', starring Jude Law, recently premiered to great acclaim at the Venice Film Festival.

Sorrentino is no stranger to making films about Italian political figures.

His 2008 film, 'Il Divo', about former Prime Minister Giulio Andreotti's cosy relationship with the mafia was well received by critics – if not by Andreotti.

The politician allegedly walked out of a screening of the film, claiming it was “too much” and that he deserved to be “judged on his record”.

Whether Berlusconi reacts similarly to his big screen portrayal remains to be seen. But, ever the entertainer, Italy's ex-prime minister seemed initially enthusiastic about the project, reportedly telling sources he was“flattered” to be the subject of a new film.

However, Medusa films, a Berlusconi-owned company which has worked with Sorrentino in the past, hastily released a press release saying they would play no part in the production of 'Loro'. 


French films with English subtitles to watch in November

As days get shorter and temperatures drop, November is a great month to enjoy a warm and comforting moment at the cinema. Here’s a round up of the French movies with English subtitles to see in Paris this month.

Cinema in France
Photo: Loic Venance/AFP

The cinema group Lost in Frenchlation runs regular screenings of French films in the capital, with English subtitles to help non-native speakers follow the action. The club kicks off every screening with drinks at the cinema’s bar one hour before the movie, so it’s also a fun way to meet people if you’re new to Paris.

These are the events they have coming up in November.

Friday, November 5th

Boîte Noire – What happened on board the Dubai-Paris flight before it crashed in the Alps? In this thriller Matthieu, a young and talented black box analyst played by Pierre Niney (star of Yves Saint-Laurent among other movies) is determined to solve the reason behind this deadly crash, no matter the costs. 

The screening will take place at the Club de l’étoile cinema at 8pm. But you can arrive early for drinks at the bar from 7pm. 

Tickets are €10 full price, €8 for students and all other concessions, and can be reserved here.

Sunday, November 14th

Tralala – In the mood for music? This new delightful French musical brings you into the life of Tralala (played by Mathieu Amalric), a 48 years old, homeless and worn-out street singer, who one day gets mistaken for someone else. Tralala sees an opportunity to get a better life by taking on a new personality. He now has a brother, nephews, ex-girlfriends, and maybe even a daughter. But where is the lie? Where is the truth? And who is he, deep down?

The night will start with drinks from 6pm followed by the screening at 7pm at the Luminor Hôtel de Ville cinema. There is also a two-hour cinema-themed walk where you’ll be taken on a “musicals movie tour” in the heart of Paris, which begins at 4pm.

Tickets cost €10, or €8 for students and concessions, and can be found here. Tickets for the walking tour cost €20 and must be reserved online here.

Thursday, November 18th

Illusions Perdues – Based on the great novel series by Honoré de Balzac between 1837 and 1843, this historical drama captures the writer Lucien’s life and dilemmas who dreams about a great career of writing and moves to the city to get a job at a newspaper. As a young poet entering the field of journalism, he is constantly challenged by his desire to write dramatic and eye-catching stories for the press. But are they all true?

The evening will kick off with drinks at L’Entrepôt cinema bar at 7pm, followed by the movie screening at 8pm. Tickets are available online here, and cost €8.50 full price; €7 for students and all other concessions.

Sunday, November 21st

Eiffel – Having just finished working on the Statue of Liberty, Gustave Eiffel (played by Romain Duris) is tasked with creating a spectacular monument for the 1889 Universal Exposition in Paris. It’s ultimately his love story with Adrienne Bourgès (Emma Mackey) that will inspire him to come up with the idea for the Eiffel Tower.

After a first screening last month, Lost in Frenchlation is organising a new one at the Luminor Hôtel de Ville cinema, with pre-screening drinks at the cinema bar. 

Tickets cost €10, or €8 for students and concessions, and can be found here

Thursday, November 25th

Les Héroïques – Michel is a former junkie and overgrown child who only dreams of motorbikes and of hanging out with his 17-year-old son Léo and his friends. But at 50 years old, he now has to handle the baby he just had with his ex, and try not to make the same mistakes he has done in the past. 

The film will be followed by a Q&A with the director Maxime Roy who will discuss his very first feature. 

Tickets cost €10, or €8 for students and concessions, and can be found here.

Full details of Lost in Frenchlation’s events can be found on their website or Facebook page. In France, a health pass is required in order to go to the cinema.