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Required Reading for Italian-Americans...

Sicilian Culture: News & Views

Italian Film History
Courtesy of

Italy by Numbers: History on Film

Istituto Luce archives contain:
12,000 newsreels
4,700 documentaries
3 million photos
7 years to create online archive
infinite happiness for Italian film buffs/historians (est.)

Aficionados of Italy and Italian film have a reason to rejoice, even if they've had to postpone or cancel a trip to the Bel Paese.

Istituto Luce, the country's largest film and news archives now has enough free online material to keep you busy screening for months. From Michelangelo Antonioni's documentary about Roman street sweepers (N.U. Nettezza Urbana) to historical footage of the gondola wedding procession of Count Edoardo Visconti di Modrone to Countess Arrivabene in 1931 it's a slice of the Bel Paese that even Italians haven't had the chance to explore in depth until now.

Luce started out as a company making educational films in 1924 and was later co-opted by the fascist regime -- but the collection ranges from a clip dated 1897 of King Umberto I to documentaries on today's Italy. Users can explore by theme -- books and related clips, a staff picked screening room for documentaries and a trip through Italy on the country's changing landscapes -- or use the search engine.

The site, unveiled after seven years of work, is sure to keep the curious busy -- some 3,000 hours of the archives' footage are available for viewing online in modem, ADSL and broadband formats, with another 2,000 hours to come online in the next few years.

Registered users can send ecards and participate in the forum; footage is available for teaching or broadcast and a research service is also available.

Luce nella rete

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