Italian For Beginners (2000)


Bil’s rating (out of 5):  BBBB.  

Original title:  Italiensk For Begyndere

Denmark/Sweden, 2000.  Danmarks Radio, Det Danske Filminstitut, Zentropa Entertainments.  Screenplay by Lone Scherfig.  Cinematography by Jorgen Johansson.  Produced by Ib Tardini.  Production Design by Jette Lehmann.  Costume Design by Malin Birch-Jensen.  Film Editing by Gerd Tjur.  

Irresistible romantic comedy made under the strictures of the Dogma film code but just as effective, if not more so, at creating the “feel-good” atmosphere that we’re used to from Hollywood. A wide variety of characters, including a timid hotel manager, a fiery-tempered but sexy restaurateur, a passionate hairdresser, a repressed pastry chef and more all cross paths when they decide to take an Italian language course and inadvertently step into a romantic mess that is a delight to straighten out. The naturalistic lighting, digital video photography and undetectable performances only enhance the experience, making you wish that so-called “reality” television were more like this.

Berlin Film Festival Awards:  Jury Prize; FIPRESCI Award

European Film Award Nomination:  Best European Film

Toronto International Film Festival:  2001

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