Why not have a movie night before your walking holiday on the Via Francigena trail. It is not difficult to see why so many notable Directors choose Italy as their preferred film location. For the most part the landscape naturally feels like a film set without having to dress it up and the culture is one of big gestures, an actors paradise.
Some of the most famous Italian movies conjure up feelings of romance, travel and food; three things that most people hope to get a sense of when they embrace the beautiful Italian landscape.
Here are a few of the most inspiring movies we would recommend that were shot in Italy.
The Bicycle Thief by Vittorio De Sica
A famous Director combined with a simple story and a stunning location makes for an eye watering watch. Available to watch on YouTube.
La Dolce Vita by Federico Fellini
This groundbreaking film was shot in Rome where it was also condemned by Catholic church in 1960. It is the first film to introduce us to the term Paparazzi. Available to watch on YouTube.
La Vita e Bella – Life is beautiful
Addressing serious issues like the Nazi concentration camps can be a tall order for any film producer but in this portrayal of a dark time we see the innocence of children is preserved through the imagination of his father.
Audrey Hepburn adopts the character of Ann (a princess) who breaks free from her daily routine to explore new places and have new experiences. Sound familiar? We like to think so.
A personal favourite, after you have viewed this beautifully shot film, little Toto and his relationship with blind Alfredo will hold a special place in your heart. Available to watch on YouTube.
Under the Tuscan Sun
If you are planning to walk any section of the Via Francigena in Tuscany this movie is worth a watch. Check out some of the stunning scenes in this romantic comedy that were shot in the heart of the Tuscan countryside.
This list is a small selection of films that may inspire your next adventure. It is by no means complete and we would love to hear about your favourite movies that were made in Italy or based on the wonderful Italian landscape.
For anyone planning their Via Francigena journey our friend Fabio di Pinto has made a wonderful documentary whilst walking the route and it will give you some great insights into the trail.