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University Library, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Italian Studies: Cinema

Popular Italian Cinema

Where to Watch

Academic Video Online provides access to a variety of media, including documentaries, interviews, stage performances, award winning films, and more. To find specific Italian-language media, use the advanced search function and refine your results by language.

Kanopy is a video streaming service with over 26,000 films available to watch on-demand. With world cinema, award winning films, and documentaries available, you're sure to find a movie or two that will suit your needs. 

If you have subscriptions to services like Netflix and Hulu, watching Italian film and television is only a click away! Simply search for Italian language media, and you'll be met with a wide variety of results, from documentaries to tv shows and films.

The University of Illinois Library has a massive collection of media located on the 5th floor of the Main Stacks, where you can find plenty of Italian language films to suit your needs. 

Film Databases

FIAF offers access to a variety of academic journals and periodicals dedicated to film studies. Coverage includes film history, theory, and criticism.

The Film and Television Literature Index is a comprehensive database that includes extensive coverage of film and television writing. Subjects covered include writing, production, cinematography, reviews, film and television theory, and preservation and restoration of film. 

Useful Subject Headings

The following are subject headings from the library catalog that should help you in your search: 

Feature Films--Italy

Motion Pictures--Italian

Comedy Films--Italy

Spaghetti Westerns

Foreign Films--Italy

Italian Neorealism

Italian Neorealism emerged towards the end of World War II and typically features non-professional actors, or professional actors in roles opposite to what they would normally play. These stories usually focus on the poor or working-class, as well as their lives and struggles, and were filmed on site, rather than on a set. Notable directors include Luchino Visconti and Roberto Rossellini. 

The Spaghetti Western

The Spaghetti Western is a genre of Western cinema that emerged in the 1960s. Most were directed by Italian filmmakers, and may also be known as Italo-Westerns. Famous directors of the genre include Sergio Leone and Sergio Corbucci, and one of the most notable actors within the genre is Clint Eastwood. 

Print & Online Resources