The latest triumph from Giuseppe Tornatore, the writer and director of the Academy Award(R)-winning CINEMA PARADISO, MALENA is an utterly unforgettable story of a boy's journey into manhood amid the chaos and intolerance o... more »f World War II. In a sleepy Italian village, the most beautiful woman in town, Malena (Monica Bellucci), becomes the subject of increasingly malicious gossip among the lustful townsmen and their jealous wives. But only her most ardent admirer, young Renato Amoroso (Giuseppe Sulfaro), will learn the untold true story of the mysterious and elusive Malena! In a captivating motion picture nominated for two Academy Awards, the eventual struggles and hardships that Malena must bravely endure serve to inspire Renato to new heights of compassion, courage, and independence!« less
Gf B. (vaxit) from COVENTRY, CT Reviewed on 5/20/2008...
This is a wonderful movie, one of my favorites. What impressed me most about this story is the depiction of the destructiveness of gossip. Watch it, you won't be sorry!
1 of 2 member(s) found this review helpful.
Why watch a censored DVD?
Gregory N. | Oregon, USA | 02/24/2003
(3 out of 5 stars)
"The European release of this film was 106 minutes. This version was cut down to 92 minutes for North American audiences, both to make it more acceptable to short attention spans and to eliminate some of the scenes that included nudity. For those of us who are capable of sitting still for 106 minutes and who are not horrified by the nude body employed in the presentation of a film such as this one, this is nothing less than insulting. Serious viewers of film should be able to see films as the director intended them to be seen, and should not settle for this sort of censorship."
Do Not Buy This DVD!!!
Roule Duke | the Green Inferno | 03/03/2004
(1 out of 5 stars)
"Malena is rich and beautiful film, starring the very fine Monica Bellucci in the title role. It is essentially three films in one, it contains the story of a woman who lost her husband to war, the coming of age of a young boy and also how Facism and war affected the Italian people.Alot of other reviewers have summed up the plot and made valid comments, so I will only speak of the horrid DVD presentation. Being a huge fan of both the film and Bellucci, I wanted the single best DVD version and I'm afraid to say that this one is far from it! Miramax claim to be an independant and artistly geared studio, yeah right, they have dramaticly censored MANY great scenes from this film. Anyone not as repressed as the suits down at Miramax HQ should look into purchasing the NTSC Korean 2-Disc release. It is the ONLY completely uncut (a few minutes short than the Italian DVD due to PAL to NTSC conversion) DVD with English subtitles. The Italian disc is uncut but doesn't contain English subtitles, so it would only be good for Italian Speakers. Believe me once you see just how much this DVD is missing (over 13 min shorter than Korean NTSC, 16 min shorter than Italian PAL) you will be glad you put in the extra effort to get a real Malena DVD.PS to the reviewer who thought that the beating of Malena scene was unrealistic or over exagerated for the film's sake, read a histroy book some time! Women who "went with Germans" were beaten, had their heads shaved and sometimes even killed in towns all over Italy and France the second the town was liberated."
Heavily Censored Malena
Roule Duke | 06/10/2003
(2 out of 5 stars)
"Malena is a fine film. Sadly, you will not be able to see this film in the U.S. as Mirimax/Disney Home Video has heavily censored it for DVD release in the U.S. Monica Bellucci is a beauty, but to fully appreciate her in Malena, you'll need an Italian import of this DVD and a region-free player."
A magical tale
G.S. | South Australia | 10/13/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I love Love stories (even if it's not that cool...) and this is an especially magical one.The movie tells the platonic love between 12 years old Renato that falls for beautiful Malena - the town most attractive woman. The one who men admire and women envy and hate. It is told from his point of view and with the background of the last years of Mussolini rule and the first years of WW2.
The story is beautiful tale that mixes up the sad reality with the boy's imaginary dreams.It runs between cruel gossip and people lies and the true that lies underneath and is seen only to the eyes of the innocent boy.
I felt so involved in the film that I wanted to stop it sometimes and rewrite the scenes as it was so painful. The balance between the innocent boy point of view, the painful beauty of Malena and the evil and vicious of the village people is treated by the director (Giuseppe Tornatore) very gently so after all you left over with bitter-sweat taste but with the powerful emotional experience.Monica Bellucci is amazing as sensual Malena and Giuseppe Sulfaro is unforgettable as Renato, the 12 years old boy. Giuseppe Tornatore is a great fairy tales weaver and he follow the same great story of Cinema Paradiso with this great new love story.
Tornatore is so great with creating the exact atmosphere and paying attention to the smallest as biggest details, you can actually FEEL the movie.
Purely a magnificent poetry."
One of the best!
FloozyFlapper1926 | Somewhere in the 20's | 08/21/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Malena is truly a great film. It works on so many levels. I have a relative who doesn't usually like foreign films but had to admit this is a great one. Its funny, its sad and it has a message. The story of the beautiful Malena is one that is heart-breaking. Malena is a beautiful woman whose husband is fighting in World War II and is left alone in this town. She is subjected to constant rumours and harassment by the men and women in their village.Renato is the young boy obsessed with her. He is also the only person who knows the truth about her and knows she doesn't do the things people say she does. Malena wasn't dating everyone, she was sewing for people into the night, carrying her husband's picture and dancing to their favorite music. The sad thing is that Malena has to become what everyone had labeled her once word got back that her husband was killed. Women refused to sell her food and she had to sleep with men to survive. There is a scene towards the end that really upset me. This movie shows how rotten both the men and the women were to her. Malena shows how dangerous lies and assumptions are to a person's standing in their community and their own self-respect.Malena is a very funny movie at times. There are scenes with Renato that made me laugh out loud. However, its a film that goes deeper than many out there. I would have to say this has become one of my all-time favorites. A beautiful, thought-provoking film."