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80

Generally favorable reviews - based on 20 Critics What's this?

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8.9

Universal acclaim- based on 68 Ratings

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  • Starring: ,
  • Summary: Set in an Italian village, Salvatore finds himself enchanted by the flickering images at the Cinema Paradiso, yearning for the secret of the cinema’s magic. When the projectionist, Alfredo, agrees to reveal the mysteries of moviemaking, a deep friendship is born. The day comes for SalvatoreSet in an Italian village, Salvatore finds himself enchanted by the flickering images at the Cinema Paradiso, yearning for the secret of the cinema’s magic. When the projectionist, Alfredo, agrees to reveal the mysteries of moviemaking, a deep friendship is born. The day comes for Salvatore to leave the village and pursue his dream of making movies of his own. Thirty years later he receives a message that beckons him back home to a secret and beautiful discovery that awaits him. [Miramax] Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 17 out of 20
  2. Negative: 0 out of 20
  1. Reviewed by: Jessica Mellor
    Dec 9, 2013
    100
    A 25th anniversary restoration of Giuseppe Tornatore’s ode to moving pictures and puppy love.
  2. Cinema Paradiso converts you to the credo that art can indeed be holy.
  3. You leave Cinema Paradiso with that feeling that's kind of like getting kicked in the stomach, but nice. It's one of those breathless, swept-away-by-a-movie experiences that you might have once a year, if you're lucky. [16 February 1990, Daily Notebook, p.E-1]
  4. Just about everything you ever loved (or hated) about Italian films can be found.
  5. Reviewed by: Peter Bradshaw
    Dec 12, 2013
    80
    If ever a movie came from the heart, it was Giuseppe Tornatore's nostalgic Cinema Paradiso (1988) now getting a rerelease to celebrate its silver jubilee.
  6. Reviewed by: John Hartl
    70
    A sweet, funny exercise in nostalgia, though it's also self-congratulatory and awfully calculating.
  7. Originally a two-part film running about three hours, this treacle has been reduced by almost a third, though it still seems to run on forever -- a bit like life but much less interesting.

See all 20 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 22 out of 22
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 22
  3. Negative: 0 out of 22
  1. AmyB.
    Sep 15, 2007
    10
    This is my second favorite movie of all time. If you do rent it consider renting the one with subtitles. This very moving tribute to cinema This is my second favorite movie of all time. If you do rent it consider renting the one with subtitles. This very moving tribute to cinema with a spice of history has several moments that will completely take your breath away. Expand
  2. DaveZ.
    Jul 21, 2007
    10
    Surprised to not see this film rated 90 or better. This film is a masterpiece. It not only tells you a story that shows life's Surprised to not see this film rated 90 or better. This film is a masterpiece. It not only tells you a story that shows life's inevitable changes, it sets you up for one of the most moving endings in cinematic history. Don't bother to see it if among others who distract you. This movie demands attention from beginning to end. SHHH.... no talking! Expand
  3. Apr 5, 2012
    10
    A beautiful movie! That is the word: Beautiful. Great storyline, performances, photography! WOW! At times, however, the pace is slow, but evenA beautiful movie! That is the word: Beautiful. Great storyline, performances, photography! WOW! At times, however, the pace is slow, but even then it makes sense! Just perfect! Ennio Morricone's music deserves special mention!. Cinema Paradiso is classic! One of my top 10 favourite movies!...and I have it here at home in my collection! A MASTERPIECE...back then, and now! yes, it certainly is and will always be! Collapse
  4. RezaZ.
    Sep 24, 2007
    10
    If I want to express my opinion let's just say it is TERRIFIC!!
  5. Sep 5, 2014
    10
    Finally got around too seeing the Italian classic that is Cinema Paradiso and I must say that I was completely blown away by how the filmFinally got around too seeing the Italian classic that is Cinema Paradiso and I must say that I was completely blown away by how the film traded a big and significant plot for a nostalgic and detailed portrayal of a man's life. The film starts with successful filmmaker, Salvatore Di Vita, receiving the news that his former hometown's old biograph-projectionist has passed away. After receiving the news, he takes a nostagic look back at his youth. Remebering his childhood in Sicilly, his early fascination with cinema, his bond with the projectionist Alfredo and his first love with a young woman named Elena.

    It's kind of difficult to decide what I should start praising this film for. The film is simply perfect and I can't wait to see the original directors cut which adds about an hour. The soundtrack contains some of Ennio Morricone's best work and the filming locations paint an even more beautiful picture of Sicilly than The Godfather films. Non-linear storytelling is quite common, but I can't think of any film that have utilized it in quite this fashion and jumps back and forth between different points of a man's life in this manner. We get to follow the character Salvatore in three different points of his life, as a child, as an adolescent and as an adult. Salvatore as a child is brought to life by Salvatore Cassio, I recently stated that I consider Judith Vittet's performance in City of Lost Children to be the best child actor's performance I've seen, but after watching Cinema Paradiso I'm torn between Cassio and Vittet. The adolescent Salvatore is played by Marco Leonardi and the adult Salvatore is played by Jacques Perrin. These three actors bring an incredible consistency to the character with some very fine acting and also brings the same consistency to the dynamic between them and the astonishingly gifted veteran actor, Philippe Noiret, who plays Alfredo the charismatic projectionist of Cinema Paradiso and Salvatore's only father figure.

    How director Guiseppe Tornatore is able to create the feeling of nostalgia when portraying a time I wasn't a part of and a place I never visited escapes me, but a big factor might be that he uses every movie-lover's nostalgia towards cinema and fascination with movies to create this heartfelt Italian masterpiece. Cinema Paradiso is an unforgettable feat which incorporates a broad variety of the emotions a person might go through in their life into the story and from Salvatore's perspective the viewer gets to experience joy, friendship, passion and love, but also sorrow, loneliness, longing and heartbreak. Undoubtedly this is one of the grandest and most sentimental coming of age films ever created.
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  6. CraigR.
    Jul 12, 2008
    10
    Truely one of the greatest films of all time. A magnificent script complemented my Ennio Morricone's soaring masterpiece - can it get Truely one of the greatest films of all time. A magnificent script complemented my Ennio Morricone's soaring masterpiece - can it get any better? Expand
  7. Aug 23, 2010
    8
    Man hears of the death of a projectionist at a local cinema who he grew up with, has flashbacks, returns to the village after 30 years.
    Really
    Man hears of the death of a projectionist at a local cinema who he grew up with, has flashbacks, returns to the village after 30 years.
    Really sweet Italian film with the beautiful setting of Sicily as the backdrop. Genuinely funny dialogue throughout but I have to say I enjoyed the first half with the young Toto more than the second but nevertheless, still very enjoyable. Ennio Morricone does the score so superb as to be expected.
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See all 22 User Reviews

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