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If you missed Matteo Garrone's "Reality" at the Milwaukee Film Festival in 2013, you get another chance this weekend at the Milwaukee Italian Film Festival.

8th annual Italian Film Festival returns this week

The eighth annual Italian Film Festival of Milwaukee takes place this coming weekend at the UW-Milwaukee Union Theatre, bringing along seven recent critically acclaimed Italian films, including six Brew City premieres.

UWM has been home to the festival every year after its 2007 debut at Marquette's Varsity Theater and the festival is coordinated in collaboration with the Italian program at UWM.

As always, the screenings are free and open to all. The films are shown in the original Italian with English subtitles.

The festival is sponsored by the Department of Department of French, Italian and Comparative Literature and the Italian Cultural Institute of Chicago.

Here is a complete schedule of films, with descriptions provided by festival organizers:

"The Red and the Blue" ("Il rosso e il blu")
Friday, April 25, 7 p.m.
(Director: Giuseppe Piccioni, comedy, 2012, 98 minutes)
Set against the background of a Roman school are the stories of an art history professor who has lost his passion for the job, a young substitute who is trying to save a rebel student, and a stern head mistress who is forced to deal with a student who has been forgotten by his mother.

"Long Live Freedom" (Viva la liberta')
Friday, April 25, 9 p.m.
(Director: Roberto Ando', drama, 2012, 93 minutes)
The leader of an important political opposition party mysteriously disappears. His wife and assistant turn to his identical twin brother, who was recently released from a psychiatric hospital. Will anyone notice?

"Out of the Blue" (Buongiorno Papa')
Saturday, April 26, 5 p.m.
(Director: Edoardo Leo, comedy, 2012,102 minutes)
A ladies' man with a skyrocketing career returns home to find Layla, a seventeen-year-old who claims to be his daughter. She is not alone ... there's also her grandfather. And they have come to stay!

Saturday, April 26, 7 p.m.
(Director: Matteo Garrone, comedy, 2011, 115 minutes)
Luciano never misses a chance to perform for his fish market customers. At the urging his family, he auditions for the reality show "Big Brother." From that moment on his perception of reality is never the same.

"Balancing Act" (Gli equilibristi)
Saturday, April 26, 9:15 p.m
(Director: Ivano De Matteo, drama, 2012, 100 minutes)
Giulio leads a seemingly idyllic life with his wife and two children. But he makes a critical error that causes everything to unravel and he discovers how thin the line truly is between well-being and poverty.

"The Venice Syndrome" (Teorema Venezia)
Sunday, April 27, 5 p.m.
(Director: Andreas Pichler, documentary, 2012, 80 minutes)
Venice, the world's most beautiful city, is invaded every day by 50,000 tourists. There are only 48,000 residents, and there are fewer every year as the city is becoming almost uninhabitable. The film shows what remains of Venetian life. A requiem for a still grand city.

"White Like Mike, Red Like Blood" (Bianca come il latte, rosso come il sangue)
Sunday: April 27, 7 p.m.
(Director: Giacomo Campiotti, drama, 2012, 102 minutes)
Leo is a typical 16-year-old who loves to ride his scooter and play soccer, but finds school agonizing. Then, a new teacher encourages him to follow his dreams, which include an fellow red-haired student.


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