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Francesco's Italy: Top to Toe [DVD]
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Following his sumptuous series on Venice, Francesco da Mosto celebrates the art and beauty of Italy - its cathedrals, churches, palaces, opera houses, paintings, sculpture and music. It is a story of the Italy we all know and love, enhanced by a look at the secret side of the country that only an insider can show us. Da Mosta reveals the full glories of Renaissance Italy and the country's astonishing cultural diversity, which was only recently unified under one flag. Born into a distinguished family, with a Venetian father and a Sicilian mother, what better guide could there be than one who knows and loves this magnificent country?
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Top Customer Reviews
Finally released from 2006 this is a four part documentary (60 minutes each episode) of a trip from the North to the South of Italy in the company of the charming Francesco da Mosta. It comes in a 2 DVD set in a single case with no extras apart from the subtitles.
Very much an insider's view of the country the journey in a red Alfa Romeo Spider along the roads from Venice to his mother's former home in Palermo is not only a taste of the architecture and art of Italy but an insight into daily life and obsessions. We taste the short intense gulp of breakfast espresso, then overdose on home made pizza, pasta and ice cream. We investigate designer fashion then take part in the Passegiata- the ritual evening walk in our best clothes through the town streets. If you're learning Italian it's perfect as Francesco conducts interviews in his native tongue and occasionally finds it more expressive to slap an Italian turn of phrase mid sentence to camera- it's all subtitled so you don't miss anything.
There are scenes of magnificent palaces with rich decoration and the homes of the poor- the Basso shop/homes of Naples, the tax avoidance scam of the conical Trulli in Puglia, the cave squatters of Sassi. The span of artefacts ranges from Roman mosaics to a collection of unused giant heads of Mussolini languishing in a basement. We move from the sublime heights of Puccini's operas to the writhing dance of the Tarantella.
There's plenty of gory subjects too- frescoes of the last judgment, the dissection museum in Bologna with its wax models, flagellants in Southern Italy drawing blood with points of glass to show their devotion, underground crypts in Naples and Palermo with mummified bodies.Read more ›
Francesco who lives in his glorious Venitian palace has no use of a car so the Ferrari red Alfa Spider he drives was loaned by a friend.
Many will feel let down by his choice of cities in the North but Italy is a country of incredible diversity.The industrial North contrasted by the agricultural almost medieval way of life in southern Italy.
This is a series of great contrast.He visits Milan,a grubby city where Italian chic and designer shops are everywhere.Eve Saint Lerent makes a guest appearence and talks about Milan in general.Italian chic and fashion are taken to extreams in this city where even the Policewomen are immaculately dressed and are allowed to wear highheels.Imagine our policewomen in this country chasing after somebody in highheels?.
Bolognia the oldest university in the world aswell as the resting place of Lucretia Borgia the reformed wife of the powerfull Medici family who eventually became a nun.
Verona and the rather modern balcony that was supposed to have inspired Shakespeares Romeo and Juliet but the Bard never made a visit to this beautifull town.
Sienna that gorgeous city where a visit to the magnificent campo or square where the famous Palio horserace takes place.
Lucca the birthplace and home of the great composer Puccini.One of Francescos friends a opera singer sings one of Puccini magnificent arias in the square.Whether you love opera or not one cannot imagine such a romantic setting without the heart felt passion of Verdi or Puccini, the locals and tourists alike are captivated by the occasion.Read more ›
Francesco's Italy: Top to Toe [DVD]
Francesco's Venice : Complete BBC Series [DVD]
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Excellent presentation of the architecture and history of Italy, and close ups of a fabulous car!Published 18 days ago by Rachel MacGillivray
Francesco Da Mosto from a well established Venetian family and vast knowledge of the Arts and Italian history makes this series enlightening and his easy going manner and knowledge... Read morePublished 1 month ago by Vivienne
I at first was distracted by Francesco's method of presenting. I want to see Italy and not him chatting and smoking although i understand it is in Italy & MAYBE IN THE 90"S. Read morePublished 3 months ago by Leila
I had already seen this on TV. But it was well worth watching again. He is a very fine presenter with amazing local knowledge.Published 4 months ago by Tony Handy