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Night at the Movies

Posted on May 3, 2009 | 4 comments

People hanging out outside of the Tibur movie theater in San Lorenzo.

I don’t go to as many movies anymore, maybe because there’s always so much other stuff to do in Rome. I also am a stickler for seeing films in their original language, as I cannot stand dubbing. For those of you who don’t know, Italians dub all of their films, so if a film is American or Chinese or Spanish, ecc there are no subtitles, just dubbing. It really drives me crazy. And yes, I’ve had debates about it with Italian friends, but really I just think the way that an actor uses his voice is so important to the roll. For instance I saw Brokeback Mountain both in English and then dubbed in Italian. And while the Italian dubber tried to capture the mumbled speech pattern of Heath Ledger’s character, for me it just didn’t have the same emotional impact. When I go to the movies I normally go to the Metropolitan on the via del Corso, as they show things in original language all week. Other cinemas often choose one day of the week to screen their movies in original language. By the way, I’m not limiting my original language thing to Italian. A few years ago I went there to see Pedro Almodovar’s Volver in Spanish with Italian subtitles. The cinema festival is also another fun occasion to go out and see movies, but with Alemanno really cutting back on it this year, there wasn’t as much good stuff in my opinion.

I should also say that I am not anti-Italian film, I just am going to the movies less frequently so when I do go it’s normally an English movie. I’m definitely not as educated on Italian cinema as I should be, but especially when I was preparing to move and wanted to brush up on my listening skills, I watched quite a few Italian films. Some favorites that I watched during that time and still own are Ovosodo, Le Fate Ignoranti, and La Stanza del Figlio.


  1. Hi Jessica… sorry for not being around for awhile but I’ve been busy as a fireman in hell would be.
    I always kept an eye on your posts anyway adn i want to say that i’ve noticed a cool improovement in your pics… you are making your eye more “glancing” than “looking”, i mean one could look to things or just give them a glance, and even if i’m sure you look with a lot of attention to Rome, your shots someway are capturing one of the typical way of looking to Rome by Romans… with a quick glance. Your shots seem to be shotted by a quick eye moving fast on a motorino, not talking about quality, light or other technical fetaure, i mean the composition of your pics make me feel like they are real glances around the city and not typical tourists images… i like the way you look at it beacause, together with your descriptions, it is really fresh and new without all the superstructures a person born here may have.

    About the movie, i have to assure you, i really hate subtitles… you are right when you say that the original voice gives the pathos a dub cannot, but… i hate reading while seeing a movie, i almost loose the visual part… subs are disturbing for the eye more than dubbing for the ears. Really i think many share my opinion, subs are just something extraneous to the movie and give distractions bringing away more pathos than dubs do.

    As usual i wrote down a river of words… cannot avoid it šŸ˜‰

  2. Very true- your pictures are getting better and better every day. brava!
    Love the crowd outside the movie. Made me want to go to the movies again

  3. I never thought there would be graffiti in Rome!
    I guess it is everywhere.

  4. 3mendo – Don’t apologize! Thanks for taking the time to comment and I’m glad to hear you think the shots have improved. I think so too and I hope they continue to. Definitely my way of even looking at the city has changed now and I’m enjoying more and more capturing the “live” city. To say my shots even look remotely how a Roman would see the city really means a lot for me. As for movies, I see what you are say but personally all the movies I’ve seen with subtitle that are good make me forget I’m reading so that in the end I only remember what the movie was about and not the language. Haha funnily enough I do that with conversations here sometimes. I often forget afterward whether the conversation was in English or Italian.

    Petu – Thanks my friend! We must do a portrait photo shoot soon! And I’m happy to see your photos coming along as well.

    Lily – Rome isn’t sacred šŸ™‚ It’s a big city and yes, there’s graffiti everywhere, but you should check out the street art category on the blog because much of it is quite beautiful. Thanks for following along!

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