BEYOND WISEGUYS: italian americans & the movies

BEYOND WISEGUYS: italian americans & the movies

    Price: $250.00

    Code: 2568

    Directed by Steven Fischler
    2017 (2008), 54 minutes
    Purchase: $250 | Classroom rental $125

    Executive-produced by award-winning actor/filmmaker John Turturro, BEYOND WISEGUYS is a feature-length documentary that uses extraordinary interviews with prominent Italian American film artists such as John Turturro, Isabella Rossellini, Susan Sarandon, Martin Scorsese, Ben Gazzara, Marisa Tomei, Richard LaGravenese, Michael Imperioli, Nancy Savoca, Santo Loquasto, Frank Capra, Jr. as well as Michael Feinstein and many others to explore the personal experiences that brought them all to the movies.

    It’s impossible to imagine American film history without Rudolph Valentino, Frank Capra, Vincente Minnelli, Henry Mancini, Francis Ford Coppola or Martin Scorsese. It’s also hard to separate the popular image of Italian Americans from the goombas and gangsters that crowd many of Hollywood’s most successful and critically acclaimed films. Why this happened and how it still affects artists working both in front of and behind the camera are key questions the program confronts. What social and cultural forces drew Italian Americans into the film industry and what price did they pay for their success there?

    At the same time, BEYOND WISEGUYS looks at classic movies, like The Sheik, The Godfather, Mean Streets, Rocky, My Cousin Vinny, and Moonstruck to understand the seemingly irresistible power the Italian American archetype exerts on audiences and filmmakers alike.

    It’s a story of tenacity, talent, and vision. The influence Italian American filmmakers have had on American movies has shaped the medium just as the movies have shaped them. Despite often playing a part assigned them by forces “they couldn’t refuse,” they have succeeded in bringing an indelible vision to the screen, one that combines cultural principles with a rich aesthetic tradition creating film art that speaks to the world.

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