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For decades Italy has been one of the most loved destinations in Europe. That is no surprise – due to its incredibly yummy cuisine, awe-inspiring nature and charming architecture, it would be hard to find somebody who wouldn’t like the country of pizza. Poetry has been written about Italy and for good reason. It’s that amazing!
Why do I want to watch movies set in Italy?
To prepare for a trip with our kids, we like to get some context about our destination, that way our kids are able to enjoy the trip that much more. We have found that they are always more agreeable to go and see things that they remember from a movie or a book! We watch a variety of movies about Italy before we took our 10 day trip to Italy.
To get inspiration for your next adventure in Italy, we have combined a list of some of our favourite movies set in the beautiful country that will make you dream about your next vacation.
When in Rome
If you are looking for a dose of romance, do not forget to watch the light romantic comedy When in Rome. The movie tells the story of Beth – an ambitious New Yorker who travels to Rome. There she plucks a magic coin from a unique fountain that after attracts different kinds of admirers that, of course, seem a bit odd. Amongst the suitors is a sausage merchant, an artist and a street magician. It would not be a romantic comedy if there weren’t some kind of twist.
Well, the twist comes in the form of a persistent reporter, played by Josh Duhamel, who throws his hat in the ring. That is when Beth has to figure out whether he might be the true love of her life. Although it isn’t explicitly noted, the fountain of love seen in the film is probably the famous Trevi Fountain, located in Rome.
When you get to experience Rome for yourself, make sure to visit the Trevi Fountain and fulfil the tradition that says you must throw two coins. One to make a wish and the other one to return to Rome.
Much Ado About Nothing
If you love Shakespeare, this is one of the very best adaptations out there! If you don’t like Shakespeare you might want to give this a try for the acting talent alone. Starring Kenneth Branagh, Emma Thompson, Kate Beckinsale, Denzel Washington and Keanu Reeves this movie revolves around the fair Hero who falls in love with Claudio who has just returned from war.
Hero’s cousin Beatrice spars with Benedict (another soldier). Claudio and Hero design a trick to get Beatrice and Benedict to fall in love. But then the angry Don Pedro intervenes and throws the whole plot into chaos.
The beautiful hills of Tuscany were the backdrop of this much loved story, and I don’t believe I have ever seen a better enticement to visit Italy than this movie!
A Room with a View
This is one of my top 5 favorite movies! I know you don’t know me well enough to trust me, but trust me its sooo good.
A Room with a View is about young and naive Englishwoman, Lucy who is visiting Italy with her cousin Charlotte. Both are wealthy ladies who live in luxury in 1900’s England. They are having an adventure in Florence when they meet a father and son at their hotel. Mr. Emerson and his son George offer Lucy and Charlotte their rooms that have a view of the Arno River. As the story progresses Lucy and George share a kiss only to part forever when Charlotte finds out.
When Lucy returns to England she is unexpectedly put in contact with George again, and she must choose between what is expected of her and what she truly want.s
Once again, the cast is fantastic featuring: Helena Bonham Carter, Maggie Smith, Daniel Day-Lewis, Judy Dench and Rupert Graves. The story while it may seem a little dry is quite the opposite and will keep you laughing throughout!
Spider-man Far From Home
I had to throw this in, because my kids were reading this post before it was live and they begged! Spider-Man Far From Home has nothing to do with Italy except that a good part of it is set on a school trip to Venice. When this movie first came out we had just returned from a trip to Veniceand my kids were tickled to see Venice on screen.
Spider-Man Far From Home is about Peter Parker whose secret identity is Spider-Man. He is going on a school trip with his friends Ned and MJ. He is excited to get some alone time with MJ (who he has a big crush on) when he learns about the Elementals who are using the forces of nature to destroy places all over the world.
He is pulled into the battle when an Elemental attacks Venice and almost hurts his friends. Peter gets pulled into the battle by the founder of the Avengers, Nick Fury and by a very kind Mysterio.
The movie is actually really entertaining and it is fun to see Venice on the big screen!
Letters to Juliet
Dreaming about exploring the beautiful Verona? Well, make sure to watch Letters to Juliet first. Similarly to When in Rome, it is a romantic comedy that will make you fall in love with Italy even before actually visiting it. The film is about Sophie – a young woman travelling to Verona with her busy fiance. Sophie decides to visit a wall where the heartbroken leave notes to Shakespeare’s tragic heroine – Juliet Capulet. She looks through the many letters and finds one from 1957.
That is when Sophie feels the urge to write to its author. In a true romantic-comedy manner, the author is inspired by the young woman to find her lover, although many years have passed. They are both accompanied by the lady’s sceptical grandson. Vineyards, Verona, Italian gelato, olive trees – although a bit cliche, Letters to Juliet is a wonderful movie for a laidback Friday night.
Under the Tuscan Sun
Based on a true story, Under the Tuscan Sun is a movie about Frances Mayes – a woman who learns about her husband’s infidelity and has her life turned upside down. To overcome her depression, a friend of Frances recommends she explore Italy. During her visit, Frances impulsively purchases a rural Tuscan villa. She then decides to renovate the property, and in the process, she gets to know Italy and its citizens better. Although it may not be easy to hop on a plane and head to the beautiful country right now, the movie has a fantastic vibe and makes you almost forget you aren’t there with Frances. Whether to experience the Tuscan countryside or simply relax from a busy workday – Under the Tuscan Sun is a great movie to see.
Eat Pray Love
The movie featuring Julia Roberts has become quite iconic. It tells the story of Elizabeth Gilbert (based on her book), who decided to take a one-year journey to understand herself better and find the meaning of life. She thought she had everything – a husband, a successful career and a beautiful home. After experiencing divorce, she realises she is feeling confused about what truly matters in her life. During her journey, Elizabeth travels to Italy, India and Bali. The movie is truly incredible and will make you crave hearty meals of pasta and pizza.
For anyone wishing to explore the city of canals, The Tourist is a film worth seeing. The plot of the movie is quite simple. Math teacher Frank Tupelo heads for an impromptu trip to Europe. One event leads to another, and he finds himself in a pretty odd situation. Elise, played by Angelina Jolie, places herself in his path and, of course, charms the teacher, played by Johnny Depp. That is when various people start to believe Frank is Elise’s partner and try to capture the mischievous couple. The Tourist is a part spy, part heist movie. It may not be a blockbuster, but it is pretty enjoyable. If not for the story, you will enjoy all the incredible views of Venice.
I hope this inspires you to rent a movie set in Italy or two this weekend. Whether you are planning a trip or dreaming of one you are sure to appreciate these beautiful movies about Italy.
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