There is so much information to plow through when you are planning a trip to Italy. Do you head to your local library or bookstore for a pile of guide books? Maybe you prefer Instagram, saving posts that catch your eye. There are blog posts to read and podcasts to listen to. Now you can add your TV streaming services to the list of Italy inspiration. Beloved classic movies like La Vita e Bella, The Bicycle Thief and Cinema Paradiso are a certainly a must. Settle in for some binge watching with our list of movies and TV shows that will inspire your trip to Italy.
Classic Films Set in Italy
If Rome is your destination watch Federico Fellini’s La Dolce Vita and Roman Holiday starring Audrey Hepburn and Gregory Peck. You can plan your own midnight stroll to the Fontana di Trevi, without the dip which, of course, comes with a hefty fine, unless you are Anita Ekberg. Stay in the Fedele or Ginevra apartmants and you can easily retrace Joe Bradley’s steps on the nearby via Margutta. Spend a few hours at the lavish Palazzo Colonna, just like Princess Anne. The palazzo where you find our Favoloso and Cavaliere apartments is featured in The Talented Mr. Ripley with Matt Damon. The Santa Croce neighborhood is where Miss Lucy Honeychurch stays in Florence in A Room with a View. Venice is particularly evocative on foggy winter nights. The Comfort of Strangers and Don’t Look Now both capture that mysterious atmosphere. For a sunnier story, Katherine Hepburn’s Summertime shows Venice at her most ravishing.
Longing for a little dolce far niente and languorous summer lunches under pergolas with lots of cold white wine? Look no further than the alluring and immersive films of Luca Guadagnino. Call Me By Your Name will make you feel like you are living in a villa such as Frantoio Villa in the Italian countryside. A Bigger Splash takes you to a remote Sicilian island, if only for a few hours.
Modern Italian Tales
Take a deep dive into the darker parts of Italian society with series like Suburra and Baby, both set in Rome. The Oscar-winning film Gomorrah tells the story of organized crime in Naples. The is also a television series of the same name. An interesting detail to make note of while you watch is that the gangster’s homes are furnished with actual items seized by the Italian anti-mafia police. The director and screenwriter Paolo Sorrentino captures the luxurious intrigue of Vatican politics in The Young Pope. His award-winning film La Grande Bellezza – The Great Beauty, shows Rome at her most beautiful and her most complicated with scenes filmed from our Imperial Vista apartment palazzo. The documentary Agnelli is a fascinating look at the style icon Gianni Agnelli and his life as the head of Fiat and major player in modern Italian politics.
Lessons in Italian History
Instead of hitting the books, make a bowl of Parmesan-dusted popcorn and stream a few episodes of a series that will sneakily teach you some complex details of Italian history. The two seasons of Rome are set in the time of Julius Caesar and look at the everyday life of Roman soldiers, gladiators, Senators and the wives and girlfriends of the powerful. While slightly less meticulous in its historical accuracy, Medici the Magnificent, the political intrigue and opulent life of the powerful Florentine family, is an entertaining binge. My Brilliant Friend is the first season of the adaptation of the wildly successful Neapolitan novels by Elena Ferrante. Post-WWI Naples and the challenges faced by the main characters are exquisitely realized.
The Food and Gardens of Italy
Samin Nosrat charms in her first episode “Fat” in the series Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat. She takes you to cheesemakers in Emilia Romagna and butchers in Tuscany. The famous Tuscan butcher and chef Dario Cecchini makes another appearance in his stand-alone episode of Chef’s Table. Anthony Bourdain’s award-winning series Parts Unknown has episodes that explore the food and culture in Rome and southern Italy. Phil Rosenthal eats his way through Venice in the second season of his show Somebody Feed Phil. Monty Don is a famous English garden expert. In the four episodes of his show Monty Don’s Italian Gardens, he takes you to gardens outside of Rome, Florence, Venice and Naples. The famous gardens of La Foce welcome our guests at the Ronda and Bersagliere accommodations. Kathy McCabe shares her love and passion for all things Italian–the food and artisans to the best-known cities and undiscovered villages–in two seasons of Dream of Italy.
Are you ready to turn your Italy dreams to reality? Italy Perfect has the accommodations to get you started. Contact us at [email protected] or 1-888-308-6123 to reserve your Italian home-away-from-home.