History: Best movies about Italian Renaissance

by sofiaponomareva | created - 17 Nov 2014 | updated - 5 months ago | Public

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1. Romeo and Juliet (1968)

PG | 138 min | Drama, Romance

When two young members of feuding families meet, forbidden love ensues.

Director: Franco Zeffirelli | Stars: Leonard Whiting, Olivia Hussey, John McEnery, Milo O'Shea

Votes: 28,177 | Gross: $38.90M

2. Romeo and Juliet (1954)

Not Rated | 138 min | Drama, Romance

In Shakespeare's classic play, the Montagues and Capulets, two families of Renaissance Italy, have hated each other for years, but the son of one family and the daughter of the other fall desperately in love and secretly marry.

Director: Renato Castellani | Stars: Laurence Harvey, Susan Shentall, Flora Robson, Norman Wooland

Votes: 459

3. Romeo and Juliet (1936)

Passed | 125 min | Drama, Romance

Young love is poisoned by a generations long feud between two noble families.

Director: George Cukor | Stars: Norma Shearer, Leslie Howard, John Barrymore, Edna May Oliver

Votes: 1,637

4. The Taming of the Shrew (1967)

Approved | 122 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

Brutish, fortune-hunting scoundrel Petruchio (Richard Burton) tames his wealthy, shrewish wife, Katharina (Dame Elizabeth Taylor).

Director: Franco Zeffirelli | Stars: Elizabeth Taylor, Richard Burton, Cyril Cusack, Michael Hordern

Votes: 6,944 | Gross: $8.00M

5. Otello (1986)

PG | 118 min | Drama, Music

Based on Shakespeare's play, Verdi's opera depicts the devastating effects of jealousy, "...the green-eyed monster which doth mock the meat it feeds upon". Believing Otello has promoted the... See full summary »

Director: Franco Zeffirelli | Stars: Plácido Domingo, Katia Ricciarelli, Justino Díaz, Petra Malakova

Votes: 485 | Gross: $0.19M

6. The Merchant of Venice (2004)

R | 131 min | Drama, Romance

63 Metascore

In 16th century Venice, when a merchant must default on a large loan from an abused Jewish moneylender for a friend with romantic ambitions, the bitterly vengeful creditor demands a gruesome payment instead.

Director: Michael Radford | Stars: Al Pacino, Joseph Fiennes, Lynn Collins, Jeremy Irons

Votes: 33,797 | Gross: $3.77M

7. Dangerous Beauty (1998)

R | 111 min | Biography, Drama, Romance

A Venetian courtesan becomes a hero to her city, but later becomes the target of an inquisition by the Church for witchcraft.

Director: Marshall Herskovitz | Stars: Catherine McCormack, Rufus Sewell, Oliver Platt, Fred Ward

Votes: 15,368 | Gross: $4.53M

8. The Borgias (2011–2013)

TV-MA | 50 min | Crime, Drama, History

In the fifteenth century, Pope Alexander VI tries to control all power in Italy with the help of his several sons, through murder, intrigue, war, and marriage alliances.

Stars: Jeremy Irons, François Arnaud, Holliday Grainger, Peter Sullivan

Votes: 46,472

9. The Borgias (1981– )

50 min | Biography, Drama, History

The ruthless Rodrigo Borgia intends to become Pope and will not let anything stand in his way.

Stars: Oliver Cotton, Maurice O'Connell, Louis Selwyn, Adolfo Celi

Votes: 144

10. Borgia (2011–2014)

TV-MA | 52 min | Biography, Drama, History

Story of the rise and the fall of the Renaissance dynasty.

Stars: Mark Ryder, Isolda Dychauk, Diarmuid Noyes, John Doman

Votes: 5,628

11. Lucretia Borgia (1953)

Not Rated | 120 min | Action, Drama, History

In the early 16th century, Italy is ruled by the powerful Borgia family, led by César Borgia and his sister Lucrètè. In a ruthless power play, César plots to have his sister's husband ... See full summary »

Director: Christian-Jaque | Stars: Martine Carol, Pedro Armendáriz, Valentine Tessier, Arnoldo Foà

Votes: 148

12. Bride of Vengeance (1949)

Approved | 92 min | Adventure, Drama, History

A female Borgia is sent out to live up to the family name by killing someone, but falls in love with her intended victim.

Director: Mitchell Leisen | Stars: John Lund, Paulette Goddard, Macdonald Carey, Raymond Burr

Votes: 101

13. The Borgia (2006)

120 min | Biography, History

A portrait of the bloody dynasty that spawned a pope, Alexander VI, as well as the role model for Machiavelli's "The Prince," his son Cesare Borgia, and a legend of femme duplicity, daughter Lucrezia Borgia.

Director: Antonio Hernández | Stars: Lluís Homar, Sergio Peris-Mencheta, María Valverde, Sergio Múñiz

Votes: 1,411

14. The Black Duke (1963)

Not Rated | 105 min | Adventure, Drama, Romance

Cesar Borgia--a cardinal in the Catholic church, a confidant of the Pope and a member of one of the wealthiest and most powerful families in 16th-century Italy--must deal with a host of ... See full summary »

Director: Pino Mercanti | Stars: Cameron Mitchell, Conrado San Martín, Maria Grazia Spina, Franco Fantasia

Votes: 44

15. Prince of Foxes (1949)

Approved | 107 min | Adventure, Drama, History

An unscrupulous agent for the Borgias suffers a change of heart when asked to betray a noble count and his much younger, very beautiful wife.

Director: Henry King | Stars: Tyrone Power, Orson Welles, Wanda Hendrix, Marina Berti

Votes: 1,432 | Gross: $2.55M

17. The Profession of Arms (2001)

Not Rated | 105 min | Drama, History, War

The history of the first victim of modern artillery and its moving agony, amidst conspiracies and betrayals of the powerful. Life and death of Giovanni De' Medici, a young brave captain in ... See full summary »

Director: Ermanno Olmi | Stars: Christo Jivkov, Sergio Grammatico, Dimitar Ratchkov, Fabio Giubbani

Votes: 1,315

18. Il soldato di ventura (1976)

95 min | Action, Adventure, Comedy

Medieval soldier of fortune Ettore is travelling through Europe with his partners looking for fight where they can earn some money. When they come across a Spanish castle under siege by the... See full summary »

Director: Pasquale Festa Campanile | Stars: Bud Spencer, Franco Agostini, Enzo Cannavale, Frédéric de Pasquale

Votes: 1,662

19. Niccolò Machiavelli il Principe della politica

Biography, Drama, History | Announced

The life of the chancellor of the Florentine republic and the author of the famous book, "The Prince", Niccolò Machiavelli.

Director: Lorenzo Raveggi | Stars: Jean-Marc Barr, Giovanni Guidelli, Cristina Serafini, Jason Croot

20. La mandragola (1965)

95 min | Comedy

Adaptation of the comic play by Macchiavelli about a man's attempt to bed a woman unable to have a child by pretending to be a doctor.

Director: Alberto Lattuada | Stars: Rosanna Schiaffino, Philippe Leroy, Jean-Claude Brialy, Totò

Votes: 193

Machiavelli's play

21. The Pagans (1953)

Not Rated | 83 min | Drama, History

Rome, 1527. Massimo Colonna is in love with Angela, a member of the Orsinis, the Colonnas'arch enemies. As she is officially engaged to Tancredi Serra, the latter, a faithless individual, ... See full summary »

Director: Ferruccio Cerio | Stars: Pierre Cressoy, Hélène Rémy, Vittorio Sanipoli, Luigi Tosi

Votes: 27

22. Pope Joan (2009)

149 min | Drama, Romance

A woman of English extraction born in the German city of Ingelheim in the ninth century disguises herself as a man and rises through the Vatican ranks.

Director: Sönke Wortmann | Stars: Johanna Wokalek, David Wenham, John Goodman, Iain Glen

Votes: 8,062

23. The Decameron (1971)

R | 111 min | Comedy, Drama, History

An adaptation of nine stories from Boccaccio's "Decameron".

Director: Pier Paolo Pasolini | Stars: Franco Citti, Ninetto Davoli, Jovan Jovanovic, Vincenzo Amato

Votes: 8,952

24. Brother Sun, Sister Moon (1972)

PG | 121 min | Biography, Drama, History

This is a dramatization of events in the life of St. Francis of Assisi from before his conversion experience through his audience with the pope, including his friendship with St. Clare.

Director: Franco Zeffirelli | Stars: Graham Faulkner, Judi Bowker, Leigh Lawson, Kenneth Cranham

Votes: 3,949

25. The Life of Leonardo Da Vinci (1971)

300 min | Biography, History

He was the creator and artist of the Mona Lisa portrait

Stars: Philippe Leroy, Giulio Bosetti, Bruno Piergentili, Giampiero Albertini

Votes: 326

26. The Agony and the Ecstasy (1965)

Approved | 138 min | Biography, Drama, History

The biographical story of Michelangelo's troubles while painting the Sistine Chapel at the urging of Pope Julius II.

Director: Carol Reed | Stars: Charlton Heston, Rex Harrison, Diane Cilento, Harry Andrews

Votes: 6,179

Michaelangelo

27. Caravaggio (1986)

93 min | Biography, Drama, History

55 Metascore

A retelling of the life of the celebrated 17th-century painter through his brilliant, nearly blasphemous paintings and his flirtations with the underworld.

Director: Derek Jarman | Stars: Noam Almaz, Dexter Fletcher, Nigel Terry, Sean Bean

Votes: 4,898 | Gross: $0.00M

28. Artemisia (1997)

R | 98 min | Biography, Drama, History

Artemisia Gentileschi (1593-1653) was one of the first well-known female painters. The movie tells the story of her youth, when she was guided and protected by her father, the painter ... See full summary »

Director: Agnès Merlet | Stars: Valentina Cervi, Michel Serrault, Predrag 'Miki' Manojlovic, Luca Zingaretti

Votes: 1,952 | Gross: $0.38M

29. A Season of Giants (1990 TV Movie)

Biography, Drama, History

At the turn of the sixteenth century, Michelangelo (Mark Frankel), Raphael (Andrea Prodan), and Leonardo Da Vinci (John Glover) create their masterpieces, while dealing with religious prosecution, political turmoil, and the discovery of America.

Director: Jerry London | Stars: F. Murray Abraham, Vittorio Amandola, Steven Berkoff, Rodolfo Bigotti

Votes: 75

30. Una vita scellerata (1990)

118 min | Biography, Drama, History

The story of Benvenuto Cellini (1500-1571), a soldier and one of the most important craftsmen and artists of Renaissance Italy, whose life was marked by many achievements and adventures, but also crimes.

Director: Giacomo Battiato | Stars: Wadeck Stanczak, Max von Sydow, Bernard-Pierre Donnadieu, Ben Kingsley

Votes: 80

Benvenuto Cellini

31. Il magnifico avventuriero (1963)

93 min | Adventure

Benvenuto Cellini knows no obstacles when it comes to creating a work of art or conquering the heart of a woman.

Director: Riccardo Freda | Stars: Brett Halsey, Claudia Mori, Françoise Fabian, José Nieto

Votes: 68

Benvenuto Cellini

32. The Affairs of Cellini (1934)

Approved | 79 min | Comedy, Drama, History

The 16th-century sculptor woos the Duchess of Florence despite the duke.

Director: Gregory La Cava | Stars: Constance Bennett, Fredric March, Frank Morgan, Fay Wray

Votes: 315

33. El Greco (2007)

119 min | Biography, Drama

The story of the uncompromising artist and fighter for freedom, Domenicos Theotokopoulos, known to the world as "El Greco".

Director: Yannis Smaragdis | Stars: Nick Clark Windo, Juan Diego Botto, Laia Marull, Lakis Lazopoulos

Votes: 4,241

34. Giordano Bruno (1973)

115 min | Biography, Drama, History

Flying from his enemies in the Catholic Church, the free thinking philosopher, poet and scientist Giordano Bruno (1548-1600) has found some protection in Venice. But the Roman Inquisition, ... See full summary »

Director: Giuliano Montaldo | Stars: Gian Maria Volontè, Hans Christian Blech, Mathieu Carrière, Renato Scarpa

Votes: 688

35. L'abito nero da sposa (1945)

88 min | Drama, History

In Renaissance Rome, the captain of Strozzi mercenary kills the banker Chigi that has refused the hand of his daughter Berta, girlfriend of Giuliano de 'Medici, brother of Cardinal Giovanni... See full summary »

Director: Luigi Zampa | Stars: Fosco Giachetti, Jacqueline Laurent, Enzo Fiermonte, Carlo Tamberlani

36. Libertas (I) (2006)

130 min | Biography, Drama, History

The film is set in mid-16th century, at a time when the entire eastern Mediterranean is dominated by two great empires, the Ottoman Empire and the Republic of Venice, with the small but ... See full summary »

Director: Veljko Bulajic | Stars: Sven Medvesek, Sandra Ceccarelli, Zarko Potocnjak, Goran Grgic

Votes: 135

37. The Nun and the Devil (1973)

100 min | Drama

Kingdom of Naples, 1577: The Roman Inquisition and the witch hunt are in force and torture is authorized in the trials, while the people live in misery and fear. The handsome Spanish ... See full summary »

Director: Domenico Paolella | Stars: Anne Heywood, Luc Merenda, Ornella Muti, Martine Brochard

Votes: 325



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