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Baarža (2009)


No Score Yet...

Average Rating: N/A
Critic Reviews: 2
Fresh: 2 | Rotten: 0



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Average Rating: 3.3/5
User Ratings: 1,167

My Rating

Movie Info

Giuseppe Tornatore directed this grand-scale portrait of life and love over several decades in a small town in Sicily. The Torrenuovas are a family of peasant shepherds who have lived and worked in Bagheria though many generations. In the years before the rise of Mussolini, the family often found themselves working for Don Giacinto (Lollo Franco), a local tycoon who often used his power and position to take advantage of others. Young Peppino Torrenuova senses a profound injustice in the way Don

Oct 18, 2011

Summit Entertainment

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All Critics (12) | Top Critics (3) | Fresh (6) | Rotten (5) | DVD (3)

The picture does have its plodding moments - but there's enough left over for the rest of us to have a reasonably good time.

January 27, 2011 Full Review Source: Seattle Times
Seattle Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

It's a shame Tornatore's movie, impressive statement though it is, never musters the emotional potency that would make it really special.

July 22, 2010 Full Review Source: Time Out
Time Out
Top Critic IconTop Critic

I'm all for bloated, confusing, directorial vanity projects like Synecdoche New York and 8 1/2. But Synecdoche New York and 8 1/2 this ain't.

February 6, 2011 Full Review Source: Quickflix

Baaria is like a pleasant package holiday: alfresco dinners, strolls through lemon orchards.

July 29, 2010 Full Review Source: Total Film
Total Film

If you have ever smiled at a Bertoli commercial it could be just the film for you.

July 26, 2010 Full Review Source: Daily Express
Daily Express

All sweep, no substance.

July 26, 2010 Full Review Source: Scotsman

It's a colossal Stella Artois ad.

July 22, 2010 Full Review Source: Guardian

Although at times it feels a little too packed, taking a closer look into fascist times, war and the notorious Italian mafia through the eyes of every day people is refreshing.

July 22, 2010 Full Review Source: Empire Magazine
Empire Magazine

There are massive crowd scenes, bombing raids, mafia dramas and nostalgia by the skipload. A film about one or two of these things might have been decent. This film touches on all of them, and ends up being about nothing.

July 22, 2010 Full Review Source: News of the World
News of the World

From the magical realist opening to the operatic finale, everything in this ravishingly photographed scrapbook of sun-kissed memories and picture-postcard nostalgia is sweeping, involving, romantic and disarmingly sentimental.

July 22, 2010 Full Review Source: Radio Times
Radio Times

Giuseppe Tornatore's sprawling, epic family drama is well acted and beautifully shot, but it's also much too long and lacks narrative focus.

July 22, 2010 Full Review Source: ViewLondon

Audience Reviews for Baarža

Oh how I wanted to really like an Italian film. I guess that this was not the movie that was going to convince me that Italian filmmakers have talent. I had a lot of trouble making any sense of what this movie was trying to convey.
November 9, 2011

Super Reviewer

Baarža is an involving autobiographical film with good performances, but I felt disappointed at how unnecessarily overlong it is and at Morricone's unusually ordinary score. Besides, the final fifteen minutes almost manage to ruin everything that had been built up until then.
August 19, 2010

Super Reviewer

"Baaria" starts in a small town in Sicily in Fascist Italy with young Peppino Torrenuova(Francesco Scianna) agreeing to buy a pack of cigarettes for an influential man who is otherwise busy with hanging out and playing games at an outdoor cafe. If he gets back by the time the man's spit dries in the dirt, he gets 20 lira which could come in handy, considering his family is always broke and forced to work menial jobs to survive, even with his father knowing how to read and still having all his own teeth. Even as the war promises to change everything, Peppino's family remains doggedly poor. But unlike his father, he takes an interest in politics to proactively put forth change for his fellow countrymen.

As good looking and memorable as "Baaria" is on occasion, it is basically just a series of slightly related vignettes, stretched out to the breaking point of where the movie becomes a slog to sit through before an ending that veers perilously close to sheer allegory about Sicily's hopes and dreams. Otherwise, there are no new insights into Sicily that we have not seen plenty of times before.(And yes, Giuseppe Tornatore, we know you directed "Cinema Paradiso.") At least, the leading character is a Communist this time around.
November 8, 2012
Walter M.

Super Reviewer

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Foreign Titles

  • Baarža - Eine italienische Familiengeschichte (DE)
  • Baaria - La porta del vento (UK)
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