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Caravaggio's Shadow

Caravaggio as an artist of the people
Italian Film Festival
by
ABR Arts 02 October 2023

Caravaggio's Shadow

Caravaggio as an artist of the people
Italian Film Festival
by
ABR Arts 02 October 2023
Riccardo Scamarcio as Caravaggio.
Riccardo Scamarcio as Caravaggio.

Visceral, extreme, beautiful, disturbing, genial, blasphemous, sacred, moving: these are just some of the words commonly used to describe Caravaggio’s art. Viewers will find the same qualities in L’Ombra di Caravaggio (Caravaggio’s Shadow, 2022), the latest film by Italian actor and director Michele Placido, screening nationally as part of the Italian Film Festival.

L’Ombra di Caravaggio follows the vicissitudes of the seventeenth-century Italian painter Michelangelo Merisi, commonly known as Caravaggio (Riccardo Scamarcio), while he flees Rome and wanders among Naples, Malta, and Sicily after having been sentenced to death for killing his rival Ranuccio Tomassoni (Brenno Placido) during a fight. Born in 1571 in a town near Milan called Caravaggio, from which Merisi gained his nickname, he spent the majority of his artistic career in Rome, where he soon became famous among the upper and lower classes for both his uncommon talent and his dissolute life of drinking, whoring, and brawling.

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Comment (1)

  • A wonderful, well-written review, it has piqued my interest in seeing the film: the words seem to evoke the colour, skills and mood of the paintings with that of the film. Enticing.
    Posted by Julian Silverman
    02 November 2023

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