Sunday, January 19, 2014

Gay Popcorn Movies 5 - (not so gay) Marriage Italian Style (1964) "Matrimonio all'italiana"

A Netflix movie. One that is definitely NOT "TRENDING" - god that's a word I hate.

This past Saturday Leon had gone to the camper show in Boston with Dave and I was home with Benni. It was cold, damp, snowy and a rather good day for a Netflix movie. Benni doesn't care what movies we watch - he is so agreeable on that score and doesn't insist on Lassie re-runs - so it was my choice.

I was in the mood for an Italian classic - one I hadn't seen - Marriage Italian Style with Sophia Lauren and Marcello Mastroianni. The movie is in Italian (actually Neapolitan dialect) with English subtitles.

I'd seen Divorce Italian Style and Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow, many years ago and loved Sophia Loren from the first. Why are women like Sophia Loren admired by gay men so often. Is it because she is her own person and this comes across in her films?

In this movie, Sophia as Filumena, portrays a woman who is strong and determined. Even though Filumena lives in a society where women have strict, very traditional roles, she is able to transcend the confines of the culture, misogyny, and the often limiting roles of prostitute, mistress, mother and wife by turning her subservience into power.

I am reminded of the movie, Before Stonewall and what I saw as the depiction of some gay men who wore the roles they were relegated to like badges of honor. They too turned their oppression into power by proudly being themselves; and their ability to be their own person took power away from their oppressors.

Perhaps these symbols from the past still have plenty to say to us today.


  1. I need to see this one again. I haven't seen it since I was young and much less aware. (But I would have really enjoyed that camper show!)

  2. Sophia and I share the same birth year!



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