Tolfa Short Film Festival

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The calendar of the third edition of the Tolfa Short Film Festival is really full of interesting and unfailing appointments and among them there is the showing of the documentary Omaggio a Roma directed, in 2009, by Maestro Franco Zeffirelli. This opera created by the famous director born in Florence, showing high register, will open the new Festival’s category that is the “tourist section”. It intends to show and to meet the Italian territory through the production of shorts and documentaries, through the beauty of moving images.


Omaggio a Roma is a project born and realized in 2009, thanks to the support of the Regione Lazio and of the Tourist Department – when Gianni Alemanno and Mauro Cutrufo then respectively Mayor and Assistent Mayor of Rome charge Franco Zeffirelli to realize a documentary dedicated to the eternal city, and to its beauty and history living for more than 2700 years. Franco Zeffirelli uses these words to present and to tell about his work, “The idea is not that to reveal a Rome already discovered and rediscovered, but it is that to go on telling an out of time story just it is the history of Rome, a chapter which will never close”.

So, Zeffirelli gives to the caput mundi a loving, touching, delicate, sincere, true portrait.. a tribute to the city, to its history, to its culture, to its artistic and natural beauty. Maestro Zeffirelli makes us falling in love with Rome and its shapes, structure, lights and sunsets. The director through his images gives us an ideal walk inside Rome of today and inside what it was yesterday and they live in the same time in the Story. So on the screen alternate Anna Magnani (in We, Women by Luchino Visconti), Audrey Hepburn and Gregory Peck (in Roman Holidays by William Wyler), Marcello Mastroianni and Anita Ekberg (in La dolce vita by Federico Fellini). Zeffirelli wants to dedicate this opera to them who are the witnesses of the “Hollywood sul Tevere”. All of them are living legends but Zeffirelli dedicates this documentary to unreal legends just like Tosca and Mario Cavaradossi created by the genious of Giacomo Puccini who here have the faces of Monica Bellucci and Andrea Bocelli. But it is not finished. Zeffirelli wants to give tribute to the Music which is the frame of the Roman images so we can hear the romance “E lucevan le stelle” from La Tosca watching Castel Sant’angelo and the romance “Nessun dorma” from Turandot this time inside the impressive Coliseum.

Roma (and not only) is portryed in its full beauty. So we can almost touch: Fontana di Trevi, Piazza di Spagna, Piazza del Popolo, Piazza del Campidoglio, Pantheon, Galleria Borghese, Piazza San Pietro, Castel Sant’Angelo, Piazza Navona.. and the falls of Monte Gelato, the Grotta delle Sirene of Villa Gregoriana in Tivoli… Zeffirelli shows museums and Arts gallery and their treasures: Laocoonte, Paolina Borghese, Pietà, Ratto di Proserpina, Bernini’s operas… all Rome’s magic is here. There is a particular tribute to Vatican: Zeffirelli shows some fragments from Missa Solemnis by Ludwig van Beethoven celebrated on 23 may 1970 in front of Pope Paolo VI and only to the Maestro Zeffirelli gave the permission to shoot this event for the TV underlining the beauty of the Michelangelo’s Pietà in San Pietro.

This opera is a jewel and it is a sort of postcard to support and increase the tourism. So, this documentary has various sizes: there is an adaptationg during 3 minutes and some clips during about 30 seconds for the Italian and International TV. But these images are much more: this is a real declaration of eternal love to an immortal city which has love in its own name.. so this love must be as much immortal and eternally living.

Chiara Ricci