Galleries | Art,
Movies | Film
The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston presents a MFAH Film: Pier Paolo Pasolini Retrospective.Each fall, the MFAH hosts a celebration of Italian cinema. These retrospectives feature restored 35mm film prints from the archive of Rome’s legendary Cinecittà, presented in partnership with the Italian Consul General of Houston, the Institute of Italian Culture in Los Angeles, and generous local sponsors and community partners.For 2013 the MFAH joins a national U.S. tour to reconsider the singular vision of Pier Paolo Pasolini (1922–1975). The Houston screenings are presented in partnership with Rice Cinema, where Pasolini’s "Trilogy of Life" films screen October 4–6.All films are directed by Pasolini and presented in Italian with English subtitles. Film descriptions provided by MFAH Films summer intern, Sara Balabanlilar.“The meaning of Pasolini remains undecipherable, ambiguous, suspended. A lapsed Catholic who never lost his religious worldview and a lifelong Marxist who was expelled from the Communist Party for being gay, Pasolini was an artist and thinker who tried not to resolve his contradictions but rather to embody them fully. With his gift for polemics and taste for scandal, he was routinely hauled up on blasphemy and obscenity charges and attacked by those on the left and the right.” —New York TimesMamma Roma
Directed by Pier Paolo Pasolini
1962, in Italian with English subtitles
35mmMamma Roma tells the story of a middle-aged Roman prostitute (Anna Magnani), eager to leave her lifestyle behind after her pimp marries a country girl. As Mamma Roma is released from prostitution, she reunites with her son, Ettore, who was raised in the country during her absence. Despite her best efforts to create a respectable lifestyle for her son, Ettore joins a gang and falls in love with a tramp. Mamma Roma’s pimp reemerges onto the scene, causing a final downfall of the relationship between a mother anxious to hide her past and a son unable to deal with the truth.withLa ricotta
(1962-1963, 35 min.)In this short film, later incorporated into an episodic film directed by Robert Rossellini, Jean-Luc Godard, and Ugo Gregoretti, Orson Welles plays the cynical, nameless director of a film interpretation of the Passion of the Christ. He is joined by Stracci, a subproletariat who is torn between providing for his family and satisfying his own gluttony. Stracci’s role as the good thief allows him insight into the world of the ruling class, but eventually causes his downfall.This retrospective has been organized in partnership with Luce Cinecittà, Rome (Camilla Cormanni and Paola Ruggiero) and Fondo Pier Paolo Pasolini/Cineteca di Bologna (Roberto Chiesi). It is presented in association with the Ministry of Culture of Italy. This event is part of the celebrations of the Year of the Italian Culture in the United States.