Cinema Paradiso

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Film and Culture
27 September 2010
Cinema Paradiso: Feeling the Love Through Music and Sound
Cinema Paradiso was made in 1988, and was written and directed by Giuseppe Tornatore. It won the Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film in 1989. Cinema Paradiso follows the life of Salvatore Di Vita from the time he was a boy to his successful career as a film director. Love truly is what the movie is about. Whether it is to have a love of film, love of someone else, or having a love for what you do, it is the driving force in this movie that causes everything to happen. The music and sound effects in Cinema Paradiso enhance the emotions and plot of the movie.

Two of the most important sound effects in the movie deal with the use of bells and thunderstorms. The thunderstorms signal that a very important event either is or has taken place in the plot, and the bells introduce us to new stages in the plot throughout the film. In one of the first scenes that take place in the adult Salvatore’s home, the first sound that we hear is wind chimes. We then see and hear dialogue that takes place between Salvatore and a woman in his bedroom. This is where Salvatore learns that Alfredo has died. At that moment, we hear a thunderstorm. So while we do not yet know who Alfredo is, we can tell by nature that something dramatic and important has happened. After we hear a bit of the storm, we hear the wind chimes once again. These wind chimes are the gateway to Salvatore’s memory, and we begin the story from a young Salvatore’s point of view. The next time we hear a significant bell is in the Cinema Paradiso when Father Adelfio uses his bell to edit and cut out all of the kisses in the films shown in the theatre. This is the first time we are introduced to Alfredo and Salvatore’s love of the film world. It also gives us an insight that the kissing scenes will become very important because of the fact that they are so hidden from the rest of the town. After Cinema Paradiso catches...
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