7 Italian Movies that Will Help You Learn the Language

7 Italian Movies that Will Help You Learn the Language

Italian is one of the most popular languages in the world. Whether you are learning the language for professional or study purposes or just for fun, it is important that you take advantage of every opportunity that you get.


One of the most fun and effective methods of learning is by watching Italian movies. By knowing how to approach a movie, you can make those moving pictures into a trusty companion for learning Italian. In this article, we will be listing 7 Italian movies that you don’t want to miss:



This movie dates back to 1940 to tell a story of a 13-year-old young boy named Renato. He always fantasizes about a beautiful schoolteacher named Malèna played by none other than Monica Bellucci. Her husband is currently on a war assignment in Africa. She is also known for eliciting gossips whenever she works on her daily chores. Renato has a sort of addiction to Malèna because of which he is unable to keep her off his mind even for a second. Whenever he fantasizes about her, things start to heat up. Even though the shy Malèna hardly speaks anything, the movie has used backdated Italian, which will be fun to watch. There are vivid and engaging narrations done by Renato that will help a beginner Italian language learner.


La vita è bella (“Life is beautiful”)

This 1997 masterpiece directed by Robert Benigni is internationally recognized as one of the most famous films in Italy. One of the most notable lines from the movie is ‘Buongiorno Principessa’ which translates to ‘Hello Princess’. It is the story of a boy and his parents who are in an extermination camp during WWII. Even though the story is tackling some horrific situations, the dialogue is plain and simple. Another great thing about this movie is that if you watched the dubbed version, following the original Italian version will be easy.


L’Attesa (The Wait)

This movie was the directorial debut of Piero Messina in which he tells the story of how a mother grieved for her dead son. But this is not the whole story. Her son’s French girlfriend has no idea that her boyfriend is dead and is still wondering why he isn’t picking her phone. She shows up at the mother’s doorstep to spend Easter. This is an immersive movie with beautifully-executed cinematography. At times, it is subtle and at others, it is screaming right at you. The film’s austere nature ensures that the dialogues are deliberate and controlled making it perfect for language learners. If you want some inspiration for learning the language, take inspiration from Juliette Binoche, the mother from the film who is originally French but learned Italian to get her role right.


Cinema Paradiso (Paradise Cinema)

This is a classic movie from Giuseppe Tornatore about a journey of a boy who slipped into the projection booth who became a projectionist and an acclaimed director. It also tells the story of lost love and the everlasting thought of where she could be. It is a type of movie that makes you fall in love with its story and the characters. This movie is discussed in the film circles even today and cinephiles debate over the deleted scenes. It is remastered so that the new generation of moviegoers have an opportunity to experience Tornatore. Not only does the movie quotes from lines from other movies, but the movie itself is also a basket of beautiful prose. If you have just started learning Italian, this movie will make you appreciate just how beautiful the language is.



If you are a fan of horror movies, this is an Italian movie that you have to watch with fixated eyes. Directed by one of the best horror movie masters, Dario Argento, this jaw-dropping movie follows a young American girl who went to study at a ballet school in Germany. There are mysterious murders occurring around her when she finds out about something even more sinister. The movie has an impressive vocabulary and an easy-to-grasp flow of language. If you are a beginner Italian language learner, this is one of the best films to start with.


La Meglio gioventù

This was originally aired as a television miniseries. However, it often repacked as a six-hour-long, two-part dramatic epic for American audiences that follows two brothers from the early 1960s to 2000. La Meglio gioventù is an unforgettable film that, at its center, is a deeply human story about family, love, and friendship. However, it also has the tumultuous years of 20th century Italy as its backdrop. Even though it is a long screening, this film is a great watch for beginners Italian language learners, especially the ones who have an interest in learning about the anni di piombo (“years of lead”) of Italy. The years of lead is used for referring to the period between the 70s and 80s which were marked by general political and social unrest and reactionary and radical terrorist attacks.


Mine Vaganti (Loose Cannons)

For comedy lovers, this film offers a layered, introspective, and subjected view of the issue of widespread homosexuality in the southern conservative region of Italy. The protagonist of the movie is Tommaso who is trying to return to his family. However, all his attempts are thwarted by some obstacles. In the film, there is a sharp contrast between the traditionally acceptable family structure and the secretive double life of Tommaso. It provides a dependable resource and a grand narrative to people who are studying the Italian language at an intermediate level. It is perfect for learning an extensive vocabulary as well as semantics in relationships, love, family, and goods. Also, you will know about several phrases that can improve your sentence formation and grammar.


Learning a language requires you to use the right tools and movies offer a great way for you to learn it. Even if you apply for an Italian course, you need to work on your own to find ways to improve your capabilities.


If you love watching movies, why not use them for improving your Italian linguistic abilities. The above-mentioned seven movies are surely a good start.


Don´t forget there are other ways of learning a new language and improving your knowledge on it. Why don’t you look for new adventures learning Italian in Rome for example? take a look at what Ynsitu has prepared for you!

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