“Think of the world.” The Taviani brothers, Paolo (81) and Vittorio (83), haven’t released a feature since 2007, but their earlier masterpieces include “Padre Padrone” (1977) and “Night of the Shooting Stars” (1982), both stories about storytelling and life in Italian villages (as seen by children). Their latest, “Caesar Must Die,” trumps the ranks of documentaries about performances by prisoners behind the walls of Rebibbia prison, but this not-a-doc has a rough-hewn black-and-white look to its rehearsal passages that matches the intense distillation the brothers have made of Shakespeare’s “Julius Caesar” (as well as the fact much of their cast are convicted Mafiosi). The levels of “real” and play with authenticity enrich each pungent moment: it’s a Taviani picture through-and-through. 74m. (Ray Pride)
“Caesar Must Die” opens Friday at the Music Box. A trailer is below.
Ray Pride is Newcity’s film critic and a contributing editor to Filmmaker magazine.
His multimedia history of Chicago “Ghost Signs” will be published later this year.