Cinema Paradiso entertains new audience: Foreign Language Honor Society hosts annual foreign language movie night


Adi Levin

Students at Foreign Language Honor Society’s annual movie night watched Cinema Paradiso, an Academy-winning Italian movie from 1988.

Hannah Hirsch, Contributing Writer

The Foreign Language Honor Society will hold its greatly anticipated movie night for all students on Friday, Jan. 13, beginning at 6. The club advisors, Ms. Carol Ferrante and Ms. Jeanmarie Doherty, along with the group’s dedicated students, have worked hard for a successful and fun night for those attending.

Last year’s film was Midnight in Paris, and this year, attendees will have the opportunity to watch Cinema Paradiso. Set in a small Sicilian village in 1988, it explores the wonders, as well as behind-the-scene footage, of true filmmaking. It stars a young boy named Salvatore, played by Salvatore Casico, who finds an outlet for his happiness in the films shown at his local cinema. The film follows Salvatore (or Toto, as his friends and family call him) throughout the major events of his life, from his childhood to his first love.

While the world around Toto changes, there is one constant in his life: Alfredo, Toto’s best friend and the projectionist who introduces him to the world of film. Alfredo is played by the celebrated French actor Philippe Noiret. Noiret actually read his lines in his native French, and they were later dubbed. Cinema Paradiso is directed by Giuseppe Tornatore, one of Italy’s most famous directors. The film also features a beautiful score composed by Ennio Morricone.

Cinema Paradiso is one of Italy’s most famous films. Since its release in 1988, it has won an Academy Award, a BAFTA award, and a Golden Globe Award for Best Foreign Language Film, as well as various other BAFTA awards and a David di Donatello Award for Best Music.

“Some of my friends are going to Movie Night and asked me to come,” said sophomore Pam Stern, “I’ve never seen this movie so it should be interesting to watch.”

The Foreign Language Honor Society has been planning this event for over a month, and the movie night will be staffed by members of the club as well as the advisors, Ms. Ferrante and Ms. Doherty.  All members have the opportunity to volunteer in shifts to support the club’s efforts. They will be selling snacks, candy, and beverages to be enjoyed during the movie.

“I am actually volunteering at Movie Night. It’s a really fun way to get myself more involved in Foreign Language Honors Society,” said sophomore Emma Levin.

A portion of the profits made from this event will go toward the appropriate fund, in preparation for Foreign Language Week in March. There are many important pieces of Foreign Language Week that students and staff are already looking ahead to, but are unfortunately impossible without adequate funding.

In addition to funding a future school event, the club has decided to split the profit made from Movie Night and donate a portion for charity. In relation to the society’s goals, they have chosen to donate to the Red Cross in order to support Italy following devastation caused by earthquakes. This large-scale issue wrecked havoc on many families, and the group is enthusiastic in their decision to focus their efforts there.

“The film is a classic,” said Ms. Doherty, one of the club’s advisors. “It is appropriate with our raising money for earthquake relief in Italy.”