Thomas Barlow, manager di una multinazionale, cinico e spietato, si sente crollare il mondo addosso quando la moglie muore all’improvviso. Per dare la notizia alla figlia, Nicole, deve raggiungerla in India, dove la ragazza vive da mesi. Ma Nicole, anziché rifugiarsi fra le braccia del padre per condividerne il dolore, si stringe a suor Anna, la suora che dirige la missione dove lei fa la volontaria. Thomas capisce che quella suora è la sua rivale. Il conflitto fra lui, Nicole e la suora si fa duro. Ma dopo un travagliato percorso umano e spirituale, sarà proprio Thomas a cambiare, scoprendo dentro di sé la capacità di capire gli altri e di amarli in modo autentico, vale a dire rendendoli liberi.
ROBERT BRODIE BOOTH
con la collaborazione di
F. MURRAY ABRHAM
CORNELIA VON BRAUN
GIOVANNI DI CLEMENTE
Premio O.C..I.C. al Festival Internazionale di Montecarlo 2001.
Attenzione: le fotografie qui riprodotte sono inedite e protette dalle leggi sul copyright internazionale.
Roberto Tatti, Virna Lisi, Maurizio Zaccaro, F. Murray Abraham
Born Virna Pieralisi, Virna Lisi made her first cinema appearances in tear-jerker films in the early Fifties at the age of 14. Later on, she would say about her stunning looks: “Life is easier when you’re good-looking. I was hopeless at school but the teacher told my mother: ‘Don’t worry about it, Signora, your daughter is so beautiful’”. In the mid Fifties, she started to play more important roles, featuring in Antonio Pietrangeli’s Lo scapolo [The Bachelor] with Alberto Sordi. But popularity arrived thanks to television and the classic RAI drama Ottocento[Nineteenth Century] with Sergio Fantoni and Lea Padovani. On 25 April 1960, she married the great love of her life, the then chairman of the AS Roma football club, architect and construction entrepreneur Franco Pesci. In 1962, the couple had a son, Corrado.
Family commitments did not hinder Virna Lisi’s career, which continued first on television and then in cinema, as well as on the stage. Giorgio Strehler, one of Italian theatre’s giants and already considered an authority in the Sixties, invited her to play the leading role in Federico Zardi’s I Giacobini [The Jacobins] at the Piccolo Teatro di Milano, which earned her flattering reviews. She also acted on stage with Michelangelo Antonioni and Luigi Squarzina. But cinema was always at the heart of Virna Lisi’s artistic ambitions. Perhaps her finest film performance was in Pietro Germi’s 1966 Signore e Signori [Ladies and Gentlemen], which won the Golden Palm at Cannes. At about that time, she signed up with Paramount and moved to Hollywood, where she acted alongside Jack Lemmon, Tony Curtis and others. Later, she would say that she did not have good memories of the period because she was often sidelined in the role of the beautiful blonde. Virna Lisi’s success would undoubtedly have found planetary resonance if she had not turned down two career-boosting scripts. One was the Bond girl in 1963’s From Russia with Love and the other was the lead in Barbarella, which subsequently went to Jane Fonda.
Virna Lisi was constantly busy from 1964 to 1970, flanking Nino Manfredi in Dino Risi’s Le bambole [The Dolls]; in Luigi Bazzoni’s La donna del lago [The Lady of the Lake]; Oggi, domani e dopodomani [The Man, the Woman and the Money] by Eduardo De Filippo and Mario Monicelli’s Casanova 70, both with Marcello Mastroianni; Una vergine per il principe [A Maiden for the Prince] by Pasquale Festa Campanile with Vittorio Gassman; Pietro Germi’s Signore e signori [Ladies and Gentlemen]; Festa Campanile’s La ragazza e il generale [The Girl and the General] with Rod Steiger; La vingt-cinquième heure [The 25th Hour] by Henri Verneuil with Anthony Quinn; Franco Brusati’s Tenderly [The Girl Who Couldn’t Say No]; Arabella by Mauro Bolognini; Stanley Kramer’s The Secret of Santa Vittoria with Anna Magnani; Terence Young’s The Christmas Tree with William Holden; Rod Amateau’s The Statue with David Niven; and Luciano Sacripanti’sBarbablù [Bluebeard] with Richard Burton.
Subsequently, Ms Lisi appeared less frequently in Italian films but she found new spaces in art films, notably Liliana Cavani’s 1978 Al di là del bene e del male[Beyond Good and Evil], and in mainstream comedies such as the Vanzinas’ 1983Sapore di mare [Time for Loving]. Ironically, it was only when she turned forty that critical opinion shifted and she began to be considered a highly talented, as well as decorative, actress. Virna Lisi’s career got its second wind in the Eighties with a number of memorable performances in television dramas: Se un giorno busserai alla mia porta [If One Day You Knock on My Door]; E non se ne vogliono andare [And They Won’t Go Away]; E se poi se ne vanno? [What If They Do Go?]; and I ragazzi di via Panisperna [The Kids from Via Panisperna].
She starred in Luigi Comencini’s 1989 Buon Natale, Buon anno [Merry Christmas… Happy New Year], which earned her a Silver Ribbon. Her portrayal of Catherine de’ Medici in Patrice Chéreau’s La reine Margot [Queen Margot] (1994) won another Silver Ribbon and a best female performance award at Cannes. Then came Va’ dove ti porta il cuore [Follow Your Heart] (1996), the mini TV series Deserto di fuoco [Desert of Fire] (1997) and the TV films Cristallo di rocca [Rock Crystal – A Christmas Tale] (1999) and Balzac (1999). Some of her later roles include: Le ali della vita [On the Wings of the Eagle] (2000) with Sabrina Ferilli, Un dono semplice [The Greatest Gift] (2000) with Murray Abraham, Il più bel giorno della mia vita [The Best Day of My Life] (2002) with Margherita Buy and Luigi Lo Cascio and I ragazzi della via Pal (The Paul street boys) (2004) with Mario Adorf. Virna Lisi continued to work almost until her death, recording her last TV mini-series, Madre aiutami [Mother, Help Me] in 2014.
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