Homage To Bernardo Bertolucci

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Bernardo Bertolucci, one of the greatest Italian film directors of all time, passed away at the age of 77.

The famous Italian cinematographic legend Bernardo Bertolucci passed away in his Rome house on November 26, at the age of 77. He was one of the greatest film directors of the last century, a true reinassance man being a cinema professional, but also poet, author, producer and documentarist who left his mark on the cinema industry from the 1960s until today.

Beginnings and style

Bertolucci was born in his beloved city of Parma on March 16, 1941. His father was the famous poet Attilio Bertolucci and his brother was the director Giuseppe Bertolucci. When he was young, Bernardo befriended other relevant figures of Italian history, such as the immortal poet, writer and journalist Pier Paolo Pasolini and other writers like Alberto Moravia and Elsa Morante. He loved writing, but it was already clear that his greatest love was cinema.

He immediately took a total realist view based on the analysis of human beings and their lives. The main point of his idea of cinema was to show the flow of life with his camera. Indeed, he followed his characters in their existences, by giving to his audience something to think about ourselves. 

Bernardo’s masterpieces

Bernardo won nine Academy Awards and rewards and, during his whole career, he made many movies both in Italian and English. He us thus considered one of the main figures of the so-called “Italian Nouvelle Vague”. Mainly remembered all over the world for his beautiful and scandalous “Last Tango in Paris” (1972) with the unique Marlon Brando and a young Maria Schneider, this movie is a story of glory and censorship at the same time. Bernardo since then became a cult director, albeit he had some troubles for some of its provocatives scenes. Nowadays, this production is still considered a symbol of erotic cinema.

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(“Last Tango in Paris”)

Another unforgettable work is “Novecento” (1976), with a mixed cast and three incredibles actors like Robert De Niro, Gérard Depardieu and Donald Sutherland, plus notorious Italian actors such as Stefania Sandrelli. The movie shows the Italian countryside of the fighting peasant farmers from the beginning of the last century until the Second World War. However, eventually he became an even more international director, well-known in Asia for his movies “The Last Emperor” (1987) and “Little Buddha” (1993).

Bertolucci has also directed “The Sheltering Sky” (1990) with John Malkovich: a story of three Americans in Tangier City in 1947. Other famous movies are “Stealing Beauty” (1996) with Liv Tyler and Jeremy Irons, and the more recent “The Dreamers” (2003), set in Paris 1968, with Michael Pitt, Louis Garrel and a young and beautiful Eva Green. These two movies talk about the beauty and freedom of the youth, self-discovery and the perturbation caused by the first life experiences. Almost ten years later, he shot his last movie called “Io e Te” — translated into English as “Me and You” — (2012) an all Italian production in Italian language.

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(“The Dreamers”)

Thank you, maestro!

Bernardo Bertolucci was a visionary who managed to use his camera to simply show the reality of life, reaching one of the highest peaks of perfection in all the history of cinema. All Italians and the entire world world say goodbye to one of the most relevant and unforgettable personalities, who left an indelible mark on our country, culture, and history.