Bored of Netflix? Italian Film Fest to Entertain Bangkokians

Pinocchio (2020) and “La Dolce Vita” (1960).

BANGKOK —  Legendary Italian cinematic classics and the latest rendition of “Pinocchio” will be screened at a film festival in Bangkok celebrating Italian cinema world.

The Italian Film Festival organized by the Italian Embassy will run from Oct. 16 to 25 at House Samyan, and feature both contemporary Italian films and ones by the legendary director Federico Fellini. 

“Perhaps in difficult times like these, where reality…seems to put a strain on all of us, approaching the art of a filmmaker as Federico Fellini will suggest a way to react and carry on thanks to the power of imagination and fantasy,” the organizers said. 

Fellini’s “8½” (1963) will be screened on 7:45pm Oct. 20, “La Dolce Vita” (1960) at 7:45pm on Oct. 21, “Intervista” (1987) on 8:25pm on Oct. 22, and “Juliet of the Spirits” (1965) at 8:35pm on Oct. 23. 


The avant-garde black-and-white “8½” is regarded as one of the greatest films of all time and tells the story of a director suffering a creative block. 

“La Dolce Vita,” which won the 1960 Palme d’Or, tells of a journalist drifting through economic-boom Rome, love always out of his reach – the late Roger Ebert named it one of his top favorites. 

Supplementing the Fellini films is a talk on “8½” at 5pm on Oct. 21, a presentation of the director’s “The Book of Dreams” diary where he recorded his dreams in drawings at 6pm Oct. 23, and a short film “Soi Tanakan” produced by the Italian Embassy of Bangkok in tribute to the director at 5:30pm, Oct. 24, all of which are free. An exhibition of lithographs and drawings by David Lynch and Fellini himself will also be on display from Oct. 16 through Nov. 9.

Seven contemporary Italian films will also be screened, including the official Thailand premiere of Matteo Garrone’s live-action “Pinocchio” (2020). The film will be screened nationwide in major theater chains after the festival.

“In the context of the celebration of the centenary of Fellini’s birth, an additional aesthetic selection criteria was chosen: the selected films reflect a fantasizing and dreamy mood, typical of the style of Fellini,” the organizers said. 


The contemporary film program opens with “Simple Women,” (2019) about a film director with epilepsy making a film about a Romanian actress. Guido gets dumped, couchsurfs on different friend’s sofas and tries to find a new beginning in “The Guest” (2019). “Martin Eden” (2019) is an adaptation of Jack London’s 1909 bildungsroman about a struggling writer. “The Disappearance of My Mother” (2019) is a documentary of 1970s model, actress, and radical feminist Benedetta Barzini made by her son. 

In “Domino Effect” (2019), a businessman in a thermal bath town attempts to convert abandoned hotels and residences for wealthy elderly, and “Blue Kids” (2019) is the surreal journey of a brother and sister.

Tickets for films are 120 baht for students and 140 or 160 baht for adults. See the full schedule here. All Fellini films and “Pinocchio” are screened with Thai and English subtitles, while the rest only have English subtitles. House Samyan is on the fifth floor of Samyan Mitrtown, reachable from MRT Sam Yan.