Il Divo


Il Divo

Critics Consensus

While the web of corruption in this Italian political thriller can be hard for a non-native to follow, the visuals and the intrigue are compelling and thrilling in equal measure.



Reviews Counted: 49

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User Ratings: 4,442


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Reviews Count: 0
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Average Rating: 3.8/5

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Movie Info

Award-winning filmmaker Paolo Sorrentino (The Family Friend) writes and directs this cinematic portrait of seven-time Italian prime minister Giulio Andreotti, whose controversial legacy peaked when he was tried for Mafia ties and subsequently acquitted. A leader with close ties to the Vatican, Andreotti was also tried and acquitted for the murder of an Italian journalist, and remains a senator for life.

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Critic Reviews for Il Divo

All Critics (49) | Top Critics (20)

  • The film takes flight on the brilliant title performance by Tony Servillo (Gomorrah), who plays Andreotti like a mummified Alec Guinness, as if encased in layers of plaster of Paris.

    Aug 23, 2009 | Full Review…
  • We may not know the man, but we know the dance, as seen in the highly diverting and hugely controversial Il Divo, a biopic as wly as its subject.

    Jul 10, 2009 | Rating: 3.5/4 | Full Review…
  • After I saw Il Divo, I suppose I should have felt indignation. I suppose I should also have felt that way after "The Godfather." But such films present such mesmerizing figures that I simply regard them, astonished.

    Jul 9, 2009 | Rating: 3.5/4 | Full Review…
  • The enigmatic Andreotti is the perfect subject for a biopic in the European tradition.

    Jun 30, 2009 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…
  • All in all, this phenomenal film illustrates Alexis de Tocqueville's observation that "The people get the government they deserve." In both meanings of the word, Il Divo is sensational.

    Jun 5, 2009 | Rating: 3.5/4
  • Il Divo joins Matteo Garrone's more expansive, more extraordinary Gomorrah -- which contains an even better performance from Servillo -- as a grim portrait of the trouble with modern Italy.

    Jun 4, 2009 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Il Divo

A brilliant film based on the complex and enigmatic character of Andreotti, and Italy itself. The Italian political scene during the Christian Democrats' reign was rife with clientelism, corruption and terrorism. Servillo's portrait of Andreotti is appropriately ambiguous and opaque. The primary strength of this film is Sorrentino's masterful direction, settings, framing, film composition and montage. Plus, any film that can successfully incorporate Trio's 'da da da' into a soundtrack predominately composed of classical music deserves commendation. Bravo!!!

Stefanie C
Stefanie C

Super Reviewer


Excellent music/sound editing and a deft portrayal by Toni Servillo that is at once comical and sad. Not being at all familiar with Andreotti's reign of terror, I was pretty confused by all the courtroom/arbitration scenes, but I gather that that's kinda what the filmmakers were going for, at least for the non-Italian audience. There are no scenes that directly implicate Andreotti's involvement with the Mafia, and that kinda gels with the film's title, The Divine, as if to say, he was that untouchable. His foes would simply disappear without him having to lift a finger.

Alice Shen
Alice Shen

Super Reviewer

Sorrentino delivers another imaginative, original take on a potentially dry topic. I couldn't claim to understand all the ins and outs of the Italian politics on show, or their veracity, but he pulls you through with his visual invention.

Gordon Anderson
Gordon Anderson

Super Reviewer


"Il Divo" is a stylish political thriller about Giulio Andreotti(Toni Servillo), the seven-time Prime Minister of Italy, starting in the late 1980's. On the surface, he does not look like a powerful man, as he is short of stature with a perpetual slouch forward.(If you want to go the megalomania route, there is a white cat.) But appearances can be deceiving as he gives away very little as far as emotions are concerned. In fact, the only time he loses control is after the murder of Aldo Moro, his moderate rival in the Christian Democrats by the Red Brigades. It should come as no surprise that Moro and Communism haunt him. All of which might explain Andreotti's migraine headaches which he has long sought relief for. He sends one medicine that showed promise to a journalist who dies shortly after. It is not the medicine nor the headaches that kill him. It is a gunshot. It is not simply intimidation that lies behind Andreotti's power, but in how it is practiced. Of course he cannot be directly or openly involved, because that could lead to a loss of power. At least, that is what is alleged.

Walter M.
Walter M.

Super Reviewer

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