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Exclusive: Ferzan Ozpetek’s Four Italian Flicks to See Before You Die

Known for his effortless, elegant aesthetic, Turkish-born director Ferzan Ozpetek is one of the most successful filmmakers in Italy today; he’s a super gay who loves ’50s melodramas of the sophisticated ilk, multiculturalism in movies, and death — all obvious when you view any of his humanistic films.

Lucky for New Yorkers, the Museum of Modern Art is showing seven of his works, including his most recent, Un giorno perfetto, starting on December 4th as part of their Filmmaker in Focus series.

To prep you for your trip to Oz, he’s offering Flavorwire readers a simple primer; after the jump, four flicks that would be on the syllabus if Ozpetek was teaching Italian Cinema 101.

Bonus points if you can name a movie that he missed that should have made the cut.


Rocco e i suoi fratelli with Alain Delon, Claudia Cardinale and directed by Lucchino Visconti, because it gives a good insight on a certain period of Italian history, provides wonderful melodrama, and is aesthetically impressive.

Viaggio in Italia directed by Roberto Rossellini, because it’s a celebration of a mature relationship, a celebration of love.

Umberto D directed by Vittorio De Sica, because it gives a sharp description of the age issue, growing old, becoming “useless” to the society.

Otto e Mezzo directed by Federico Fellini, which cannot not be mentioned. It is particularly dear to me because it’s the innate expression of creativity, and that’s a very close issue to me.

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