Il divo: La spettacolare vita di Giulio Andreotti (2008)

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Il divo_La spettacolare vita di Giulio Andreotti

Il Divo is a film by award-winning director Paolo Sorrentino that tells the story of controversial Italian politician Guilio Andreotti.

This year, the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film went to The Great Beauty (La grande bellezza), a film directed by Paolo Sorrentino and starring Toni Servillo. But this poignant film about a middle aged man searching for meaning in his life wasn’t the first time that Sorrentino has paired with Servillo. In fact, Servillo has appeared in all but two of Sorrentino’s feature-length films, including the political biography Il Divo (Il divo: La spettacolare vita di Giulio Andreotti). Il Divo is based on the colorful career of former Italian Prime Minister Giulio Andreotti, played flawlessly by Servillo. Andreotti was a peculiar man with a soft monotonous voice and a malformed spine, who was plagued by criminal scandals and rumors of mafia connections throughout his career. He served three non-consecutive terms as Prime Minister, and also served as Senator, Minister of the Interior, Defence Minister and Foreign Minister. There were whispers of corruption and links to powerful and subversive political organizations. His advisers and the members of his cabinets served as a who’s who of influential businessmen, bankers and members of the Vatican. At the end of his political career, Andreotti was put on trial for the murder of a journalist, Carmine Pecorelli, who was investigating his possible criminal activities. Andreotti was acquitted, but then later convicted at a retrial and sentenced to 24 years in prison. Perhaps owing to Andreotti’s strong political connections, the Italian supreme court vacated his murder conviction a year later, allowing him to live the rest of his life in freedom. In the film, the viewer never witnesses Andreotti committing any crimes, but his interactions throughout the film portray him as a shrewd and ruthless businessman. His strangely co-dependent relationship with his secretary Livia, played by Anna Bonaiuto, shows a more human side to a man that some called Beelzebub or The Black Pope. Servillo provides a seamless integration into the personage of Andreotti, transforming his voice, mannerisms, and physical appearance to become the controversial politician. The soundtrack is excellent and perfectly sets the tone for significant scenes.

Click here to view the trailer for Il Divo.