93 user 66 critic

The Best of Youth (2003)

La meglio gioventù (original title)
An Italian epic that follows the lives of two brothers, from the 1960s to the 2000s.

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33 wins & 24 nominations. See more awards »




Cast overview, first billed only:
Luigi Lo Cascio ... Nicola Carati
Alessio Boni ... Matteo Carati
Adriana Asti ... Adriana Carati
Sonia Bergamasco ... Giulia Monfalco
Fabrizio Gifuni ... Carlo Tommasi
Maya Sansa ... Mirella Utano
Valentina Carnelutti ... Francesca Carati
Jasmine Trinca ... Giorgia Esposti
Andrea Tidona Andrea Tidona ... Angelo Carati
Lidia Vitale ... Giovanna Carati
Claudio Gioè ... Vitale Micavi
Paolo Bonanni Paolo Bonanni ... Luigino
Giovanni Scifoni Giovanni Scifoni ... Berto
Riccardo Scamarcio ... Andrea Utano
Camilla Filippi ... Sara Carati


Nicola and Matteo Carati are two brothers of Rome, who live the years from 1966 to 2000 and all the events which have signed this period. They begin their adventure, helping Giorgia, a young girl confined in an asylum. Then, after the flood of Florence, Nicola meets Giulia a talented piano player with a dangerous sympathy for the BR. Matteo, a rebel spirit entered in the police, will find the optimistic photographer Mirella. These four characters and many others will cross the years of terrorism and Tangentopoli. Written by ltj36

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


The possibilities were endless...


Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language and brief nudity | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »


Official Sites:

Official site




Italian | English | Norwegian

Release Date:

20 June 2003 (Italy) See more »

Also Known As:

The Best of Youth See more »

Filming Locations:

Florence, Tuscany, Italy See more »


Box Office

Opening Weekend:

€44,759 (Italy), 22 June 2003, Limited Release

Opening Weekend USA:

$7,490, 6 March 2005, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$254,224, 4 July 2005
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


(two parts) | (4 episodes) (TV)

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


At 2:25, the poem that Luigi reads to Matteo while their are walking in the park is called "Dei Sepolcri", from the italian poet Ugo Foscolo. See more »


(at around 27 mins) After a caption has shown that the film is set in 1966 at the beginning and the main characters are getting into a car, a radio is heard playing the song "Might just take your life" by Deep Purple. This song was released in 1974. See more »


Sicilian Commissario: What were you looking for, joining the Police?
Matteo Carati: I wanted some rules.
Sicilian Commissario: And what do you do, with these rules?
Matteo Carati: I apply them
See more »


References  (1963) See more »


Sonatine, M. 40. First Movement: Modéré
Composed by Maurice Ravel
See more »

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User Reviews

Testimony to the transcending power of art
29 January 2006 | by jdesandoSee all my reviews

"There is, nevertheless, a certain respect and a general duty of humanity that ties us, not only to beasts that have life and sense, but even to trees and plants." Montaigne

Rarely does a new film find a place on a longstanding short list of best ever. The Italian import Best of Youth recently entered my all time best ten, a singular honor considering I had to sit still for six hours of viewing, and I rarely sit still anytime, even if my name is DeSando and it's a family saga.

Director Francis Ford Coppola created a movie empire with his Godfather series and ended up with what some consider the best American movie ever made. It is unforgettable for its emphasis on family values mafia style and its stunning photography. The Best of Youth is decidedly not mafia related; rather it is a romantic and historical rendering of Italy from the 1960's as seen through the lives of the Carati family and their friends and lovers. The two brothers, Nicola and Matteo, represent the Janus-like conflict of liberal and conservative in the volatile last half-century of Italian social and cultural change.

This is humanistic history at its best as director Marco Tullio Giordana takes us through the sexy seventies, a devastating Florence flood, the emergence of Red Brigades, assassinations and business downturns including the Fiat layoffs. Despite deaths, suicide, and disappointment, the last line of the film, spoken in the new century, repeats the sentiment of the youthful days in the last century that everything is truly beautiful. How can you miss that theme when the cinematography emphasizes the antique charm of Italy and the close up beauty of actors who look their parts, albeit rarely ugly? The film, often tightly framed, accentuates character over plot and a certain imprisonment in character and destiny. The choice of actors is nothing short of inspired.

The genius of Best of Youth is that like Italy itself, this family is a stew of ideologies that offers up dignity of the individual as the highest value and respect (remember The Godfather) for humanity the only arbiter of peace. This film stands with Brokeback Mountain and The New World as a towering achievement and testimony to the transcending power of art to make us look at ourselves as vulnerable and beautiful.

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