New York in the Movies


Palazzo delle Esposizioni - Sala Cinema

26 April - 15 June 2013


New York is the American cinema, the set par excellence chosen by thousands of directors who have moulded the image of contemporary man on the model of the Big Apple.  Over the years the city has spawned every kind of film from gangster movies to musicals, from thrillers to sci-fi and from straight drama to romantic comedies.  Skyscrapers, streets and nightclubs provide the background to tragedies and love stories, to underhand trafficking amongst gangsters, corrupt police officers and dropouts of every shape and size - a human universe that has found in the contradictions of the great metropolis both the horizon of success and the inferno of defeat.  This retrospective will take audiences on a full immersion in the city of New York seen through the eyes of the greatest American movie directors, in a carousel of gripping masterpieces in which the city plays the leading role.  We will be travelling on a journey of exploration to the very heart of the contemporary world, visiting its every corner with a host of unforgettable characters for our guides.


26 and 27 April, 9.00 pm

Breakfast at Tiffany's

directed by Blake Edwards. USA, 1961, 115 min. - original version with Italian subtitles  

A timeless masterpiece of American comedy with its magical lure as irresistible as the fragile and extremely beautiful Audrey Hepburn, who became a movie icon by wandering the streets of New York in this magnificent film.


28 April and 1 May, 9.00 pm

West Side Story

directed by Jerome Robbins, Robert Wise. USA, 1961, 152 min. - Italian version

Fully ten Oscars went to this film, the musical that revolutionised the genre by setting Romeo and Juliet against a backdrop of juvenile gang warfare in the city that is at once both a leading player and a powerless onlooker as racial hatred erupts into violence on its streets.  Thanks to Bernstein's exceptional score, this movie is an explosion of song, dance and dazzling movement.


2 and 3 May, 9.00 pm

Taxi Driver

directed by Martin Scorsese. USA, 1976, 113 min. - original version with Italian subtitles

A pillar of modern movie-making, this film slices through the void of the urban jungle in the alienated gaze of Robert De Niro, whose extraordinary performance embodies the dark side of America as it emerges from the Vietnam War, a hotbed of solitude and repressed violence waiting to explode.


4 and 5 May, 9.00 pm

Saturday Night Fever

directed by John Badham. USA, 1977, 118 min. - original version with Italian subtitles

Spectacular dance sequences and the Bee Gees' irresistible music are the essence of this iconic 'seventies movie.  But the dazzling explosion of disco culture concealed the malaise of youngsters with very few prospects in the squallor of Brooklyn, amid problems of racial integration and family tensions.


7 and 8 May, 9.00 pm


directed by Woody Allen. USA, 1979, 96 min. - Italian version

This movie is an extraordinary and intense statement of love for the Big Apple from the master of contemporary American cinema who superimposes his own soul on the image of the city, forging an interior, dreamlike New York to the rhythm of George Gershwin.


9 and 10 May, 9.00 pm

The Warriors

directed by Walter Hill. USA, 1979, 92 min. - Italian version

The gangs of New York are involved in a nighttime hunt reeking of drugs, a nightmare chase down dark streets, in unsettling parks and deserted train stations covered in graffiti.  This is the cult movie par excellence that changed the way we look at artists, deejays, rappers and street writers.


11 and 12 May, 9.00 pm

Prince of the City

directed by Sidney Lumet. USA, 1981, 167 min. - original version with Italian subtitles

A masterly thriller based on the true story of a detective from the narcotics squad who was bent on revealing the corruption rife in the force, this film takes a merciless look at corruption in an America bursting with the inconsistencies that are part and parcel of democracy and of the administration of justice.


15 and 16 May, 9.00 pm

Wall Street

directed by Oliver Stone. USA, 1987, 126 min. - Italian version

New York in the 'eighties was the battleground of the "unacceptable face of capitalism", a world at which Oliver Stone points a stern finger of accusation as he takes the lid off an unscrupulous system and its thirst for power, personified by Michael Douglas in an outstanding performance that was to win him an Oscar.


17 and 19 May, 9.00 pm

King of New York

directed by Abel Ferrara. USA, 1990, 103 min. - Italian version

The master of independent "anti-Hollywood" cinema drags us down into the gutter amid fighting crime factions in a violent, nighttime movie midway between an action gangster film and a social thriller, with a masterly performance from Christopher Walken.


21 and 22 May, 9.00 pm

The Age of Innocence

directed by Martin Scorsese. USA, 1993, 139 min. - Italian version

In a wonderfully atmospheric reconstruction, Scorsese analyses New York's unchanging social identity, discovering the same tribal gangster rationale in late 19th century high society, where the violence may have been only psychological but was no less lethal for all that.


23 and 24 May, 9.00 pm

Carlito's Way

directed by Brian De Palma. USA, 1993, 144 min. - Italian version

New York is once again the setting for a gangster movie which the great De Palma tinges here with noir, glueing us to our seats as we are emotionally dragged into the end of an era... and of Carlito, a criminal doomed to failure, portrayed here in an unforgettable performance by Al Pacino.


25 and 26 May, 9.00 pm


directed by Wayne Wang. USA, Germany, 1995, 112 min. - Italian version

The first screenplay by New York's great poet, Paul Auster, who mixes stories of varied humanity encountered at a Brooklyn tobacconist's, ranging from praise of the cigarette to existential adventures in an irresistible microcosm peppered with excellent performances throughout and certainly one of the best of Harvey Keitel's entire career.


29 and 30 May, 9.00 pm

Living in Oblivion

directed by Tom DiCillo. USA, 1995, 90 min. - Italian version

This amusing comedy on the movie world tells the story of a ragtag film crew and a neurotic director getting to grips with the exhilarating adventures and daily problems encountered on a low-cost set in the streets of a city that begins to look increasingly like the stage set for a dream.


31 May and 1 June, 9.00 pm


directed by Julian Schnabel. USA, 1996, 108 min. - Italian version

Schable, a celebrated painter in his own right, tells the story of Jean-Michel Basquiat, the unknown Brooklyn graffiti artist who rose to international fame in the 'eighties and died of a heroin overdose at a very young age.  This intense portrait of an artist is remarkable both for its cast - with David Bowie as Andy Warhol - and for its soundtrack by John Cale.


2 and 4 June, 9.00 pm

Thirteen Conversations About One Thing

directed by Jill Sprecher. USA, 2001, 95 min. - Italian version

In a distant and chaotic New York, we follow five stories of everyday folk who are in search of happiness yet who still have to cope with the hurdles fate puts in their way.  Fear and feelings are narrated with a wealth of psychological nuance that is a distinct rarity in contemporary film-making.


5 and 6 June, 9.00 pm

Sidewalks of New York

directed by Edward Burns. USA, 2001, 108 min. - Italian version

A sparkling comedy that adopts a style reminiscent of a documentary to track a medley of love stories through the neighbourhoods of the city, which is the film's true star.  From Queens to Greenwich Village we encounter the different moods of the city and of the films leading players in their search for love and their determination to give a meaning to their lives.


7 and 8 June, 9.00 pm

25th Hour

directed by Spike Lee. USA, 2002, 135 min. - Italian version

A pusher's last hours of freedom before he goes to jail inspire Spike Lee to take an intense and poetic look at his city in a farewell elegy that is also a reflection on the end of an era, through a time frame extended by the endless wait that hints at the universal concept of a botched life.


9 and 11 June, 9.00 pm

We Own the Night

directed by James Gray. USA, 2007, 105 min. - Italian version

James Gray, a true New Yorker and one of the best independent film-makers of the new generation, raises the thriller genre from the gutter to the level of a classic tragedy, crossing family conflict and the clash between gangland and the law with a reflection on the struggle between good and evil.


12 and 13 June, 9.00 pm


directed by Matt Reeves. USA, 2008, 85 min. - Italian version

An incredible and enthralling disaster movie that embodies the phobias of the new millennium, transcending the limits of the genre film with an innovative technique based on hand-held camera work which plunges the audience into the heart of the catastrophe that is destroying New York.


14 and 15 June, 9.00 pm


directed by Steve McQueen. UK, 2011, 101 min. - Italian version

Great British video artist Steve McQueen's masterly observation of the metropolis with its myriad opportunities, where deep urges keep ceaselessly and boundlessly resurfacing, building a prison with no way out for the solitude of the leading actor, portrayed here in an exceptional performance by Michael Fassbender.


Our special gratitude goes to the Cineteca di Bologna for its kind cooperation.

Our gratitude for loaning copies of the films goes to:  Bim Distribuzione, Buena Vista International, Cineteca di Bologna, Cineteca del Museo Nazionale del Cinema di Torino, Lucky Red Distribuzione, Park Circus and Universal Pictures Italia.



Palazzo delle Esposizioni - Sala Cinema

Admission via steps in via Milano 9a, Rome


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