Cinema Paradiso

Synopsis: Young Salvatore Di Vita (Salvatore Cascio) discovers the perfect escape from life in his war-torn Sicilian village: the Cinema Paradiso movie house, where projectionist Alfredo (Philippe Noiret) instills in the boy a deep love of films. When Salvatore grows up, falls in love with a beautiful local girl (Agnese Nano) and takes over as the Paradiso's projectionist, Alfredo must convince Salvatore to leave his small town and pursue his passion for filmmaking.
Genre: Drama
Production: Miramax Films
  Won 1 Oscar. Another 23 wins & 31 nominations.
Rotten Tomatoes:
155 min


The October sun slashes through the gray clouds, cuts across the

shadow towards the sea, along the coast where the new suburbs of the

city of Giancaldo have been built up.

Bright light streams through the windows, glancing off the white

walls in an almost blinding reflection. MARIA, a woman a little over

sixty, is trying to find somebody on the phone.


...Salvatore, that's right,

Salvatore. Di Vita Salvatore

...But, miss, what do you mean you

don't know him?!...I...Yes...

(She gives a nervous sigh.

She has dialed her way

through endless numbers

but still hasn't managed

to speak to Mr. Di

Vita. She finally heaves a

sigh of relief.)

...That's right, good for you!

Oh!...yes...And I'm his

mother. I'm calling from Sicily. Been

trying all day...Ah, he's not

there...But would you be so kind as

to give me...?...Yes...

(She nods at another woman

around forty sitting

it is LIA, her

daughter, who jots down

the numbers her

mother dictates:

...Six, five, six, two, two, oh,

six...Thanks ever so

much...Goodbye. Goodbye.

She hangs up, takes the number LIA has jotted down, determined to have still

another try. LIA speaks to her as if she were a baby, to be more convincing.


Look, Ma...It's useless calling him.

He'll be terribly busy, God knows

where he is. Besides he might not

even remember. Do as I say, forget

it...He hasn't been here for thirty

years. You know how he is.

MARIA pauses to think it over. The decision she has to make is important. Then,



He'll remember! He'll remember!

(She puts on her glasses

and starts dialing

the number.)

...I'm positive. I know him better

than you do. If he were to find

out we hadn't told him, he'd be

angry. I know.

(She takes off her


...Hello? Good morning. Could I

please speak to Mr. Salvatore Di

Vita. I'm his mother...


It's late, but there is still traffic on the streets heading downtown.

Inside a high-powered car, a man around fifty is driving. It is

SALVATORE Dl VITA. Elegant, just growing gray, a handsome face

creased by deep wrinkles. His weary expression hides the determined,

sell-assured manner of the successful self-made man. He must be a

heavy smoker judging by the way he draws the last puffs on his


He stops at a red light. He stubs out the cigarette and rolls down the

window, as a little Fiat Uno pulls up alongside. A rock tune plays full

blast on the radio. SALVATORE turns instinctively to have a look at the

man at the wheel a BOY with a brush cut standing straight in the latest

fashion. He studies the Boy's expression with almost exaggerated

attention, but devoid of curiosity, coldly. The GIRL sitting beside him,

lots of curly hair, overripe red lips, returns SALVATORE'5 look,

provocatively. The BOY notices, turns to SALVATORE in a surly voice:


Hey! What the f*** you looking at!?

Green light. The Fiat Uno shoots off, leaving a trail of music in its wake.


The apartment is luxurious, tastefully furnished. There is no one waiting for

SALVATORE. Through the picture window on the terrace, the city can be seen

slumbering in the night. SALVATORE gets undressed on his way to the bedroom. He

moves quietly, as if to make no noise. He doesn't even turn on the light,

finishes getting undressed in the pale blue glow coming from the picture window.

A rustling sound, a movement on the bed, the voice of a woman waking up.


Salvatore...But what time is it?

She turns on the bedside light. It is CLARA, a young woman around thirty.

SALVATORE climbs in beside her under the covers, kisses her sweetly, then in a


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Giuseppe Tornatore

Giuseppe Tornatore (born 27 May 1956) is an Italian film director and screenwriter. He is considered as one of the directors who brought critical acclaim back to Italian cinema. In a career spanning over 30 years he is best known for directing and writing drama films such as The Legend of 1900, Malèna, Baarìa and The Best Offer. Probably his most noted film is Nuovo Cinema Paradiso, for which Tornatore won the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film. He directed also several advertising campaigns for Dolce & Gabbana. more…

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Submitted by acronimous on August 18, 2016

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    "Cinema Paradiso" STANDS4 LLC, 2023. Web. 28 Jan. 2023. <>.

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