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Cinema Paradiso (1988)
"Nuovo Cinema Paradiso" (original title)

R  |   |  Drama  |  23 February 1990 (USA)
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Ratings: 8.5/10 from 135,730 users   Metascore: 80/100
Reviews: 380 user | 117 critic | 20 from

A filmmaker recalls his childhood, when he fell in love with the movies at his village's theater and formed a deep friendship with the theater's projectionist.



(story), (screenplay), 2 more credits »
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Title: Cinema Paradiso (1988)

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Top 250 Movies #56 | Won 1 Oscar. Another 20 wins & 23 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Enzo Cannavale ...
Isa Danieli ...
Leo Gullotta ...
Pupella Maggio ...
Leopoldo Trieste ...
Father Adelfio
Tano Cimarosa ...
Village Idiot
Roberta Lena ...
Nino Terzo ...
Peppino's Father


A famous film director remembers his childhood at the Cinema Paradiso where Alfredo, the projectionist, first brought about his love of films. He returns home to his Sicilian village for the first time after almost 30 years and is reminded of his first love, Elena, who disappeared from his life before he left for Rome. Written by Graeme Roy <>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


A celebration of youth, friendship, and the everlasting magic of the movies.



Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some sexuality | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:

| |  »




| |

Release Date:

23 February 1990 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Cinema Paradiso  »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$25,899 (USA) (14 June 2002)


$11,990,401 (USA)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| (Europa Cinema Festival) | (cut theatrical)

Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The character played by Brigitte Fossey was included in the first theatrical version of the film (155 minutes, released in November 1988) but then dropped in the shorter re-release (124 minutes, May 1989), which was shown internationally. Her scenes were eventually reinstated in the extended version (173 minutes). See more »


When the film is borrowed from a neighboring theater, we see that the projector is apparently located in the balcony of the theater, not in an enclosed projection room. Furthermore, the projector has a "magnetic penthouse" sound pickup, an attachment used to play early stereophonic prints. This process would not be invented until 1953 and not used widely until years after nitrate film was phased out. See more »


[first lines]
Maria Di Vita - Older: [in Italian]
[on the phone]
Maria Di Vita - Older: Yes, Salvatore di Vita. You mean you don't know him, Miss? That's right, and I'm his mother. I've been calling from Sicily, all day long. I understand, he's not there.
See more »


Features The Knockout (1914) See more »


Love Theme
Written by Ennio Morricone
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

A breath of fresh air blowing away the cobwebs of Hollywood "blah" films.
21 December 1998 | by (Christchurch, New Zealand) – See all my reviews

I have seen this film at least a dozen times and each time I am carried away to a small village in Italy, where the dreams of a small boy come true and we can join his spellbinding journey. The Italian language (it is subtitled) adds to the film's beauty and music, the characters are so real you can almost smell them. I am absorbed into "Paradiso" each time I watch it, so that when it is over, I am shocked into the realisation that I haven't actually been anywhere except right there, in my theatre seat. I am not a huge "art house" film fan or indeed enjoy subtitled films (it is hard on the old eyes!) but "Paradiso" is a gem and is worth seeing again and again.

139 of 160 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Is Alfredo the most evil movie villain ever? zomfg-overrated
Director's Cut? You can keep it!! orangelion03
who is the blonde singer/actress in the on screen dance/song routine? nick-2218
If you hate this film......... jaytee2000
How many times have you watched Cinema Paradiso? rthomp-8
Anybdy else think the ending was not exactly touching? genghis_v
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