Sunday, 27 February 2011

Italy: ultimate filmset?

Back from a fantastic few days in Rome I have (geek that I am) been thinking about all the fab films set in the Italian capital and how certain cities just seem to lend themselves to being the ultimate film set. It's hard to find a film NOT set in New York, London or Paris or all the other typically well-known world capitals.. but films set in Rome are not just using it for a pretty background - it adds culture, grandeur, religion, history and an atmosphear hard to recreate elsewhere.

Here are my top 5:
  • The Italian Job (the original!) - Michael Caine leads a team of criminals in a massive heist through cities and across the Italian countryside. Arguably the best film ending ever made.
  • Life is Beautiful - gorgeous and beautifully horrific Italian film set during the Holocaust as a Jewish man lies to his son with comedy to shield him from the horrors of war.
  • Angels and Demons - not the greatest film/book ever made but the Vatican set is breathtaking and the culture/history element makes it worthwhile.
  • Tea with Mussolini - Stellar cast from Dame Maggie Smith to Cher - beautiful.
  • Ben Hur - before Charlton Heston became the terrifying gun toting crazy man he was phenomenal in this epic film. The charriot sequence alone makes it worthy viewing.

And though it wasn't set there - you should also see the brilliantly funny Life of Brian (technically made in Egypt ) but meant to be in Rome at the time of Christ. Gotta love some Monty Python fun.


LE xxx


  1. What about Gladiator?


  2. can't believe you didn't mention Roman Holiday starring Audrey Hepburn and Gregory Peck.