The New Mexico Italian Film Festival enters its sophomore year with more days, more films and more events. The second annual film fest gets underway this Sunday, Feb. 10, at 1 p.m. with an opening gala concert by the Albuquerque Philharmonic featuring classic Italian music at the KiMo Theatre in downtown Albuquerque. This is followed by the New Mexico premiere of The Legend of Tony Vilar, a comic mockumentary about an Italian who becomes a pop superstar in Argentina. An opening gala dinner is next at 4 p.m. at the Embassy Suites. Opening night wraps with a screening of Martin Scorsese’s Italian filmmaking documentary My Voyage To Italy, beginning at 6 p.m. back at the KiMo.
Starting on Tuesday, Feb. 12, screenings of classic and modern Italian films alternate between the Lobo Theater and the Guild Cinema in Nob Hill. On Tuesday, it’s The Bicycle Thief and The Godfather II at the Lobo. On Wednesday, it’s Not of This World and The Golden Door at the Lobo. On Thursday, the Lobo screens Nine Good Teeth and Ma Quando Arrivano Ragazze? with a jazz concert by the New Mexico Jazz Workshop in between. On Friday, the Guild takes over with Malena and My Brother is an Only Child. On Saturday, the Lobo gets Ma Quando Arrivano Ragazze?, The Legend of Tony Vilar and Johnny Stecchino, while the Guild gets Umberto D, Nine Good Teeth and The Garden of the Fitzi-Continis.
Sunday, Feb. 17, wraps it all up with a closing-night gala screening of Marco Tullio Giordana’s epic historical romance The Best of Youth at the Guild Cinema. After the first half of the film (it’s six hours total!), patrons will be moved across the street to Scalo Northern Italian Grill for an “intermezzo dinner.” Following the Italian feast, ticket holders will return to the Guild for the film’s second half. What an incredible way to wrap up the Italian Film Fest’s eight-day run.
Tickets can be purchased at all three Borders Books and Music locations, online at www.italianfilmfest.org or at individual box offices one hour prior to screen time. Given the limited number of seats at the assorted venues and the popularity of last year’s fest, you might want to consider getting those tickets in anticipo. (That’s Italian for ASAP.) Feel free to buy as many tickets as you want; proceeds will go to help benefit UNM’s Children’s Hospital. For a complete list of films and screening times, log on to www.italianfilmfest.org.