Posted on: June 18, 2008 Posted by: James McQuiston Comments: 0

Sophia Loren has been in so many films over the course of eir career that it is not funny. The 4-film collection just released by Lionsgate in early June of 2008 features four films – 1954’s Attila and Carosello Napoletano, 1962’s Madame Sans-Gene, and 1970’s I Girasoli, a small package of the over 50 films that Loren has been in from 1950 on. The films have the original Italian and French language spoken, with English (and Spanish) subtitles playing across the screen, and have benefited tremendously by a skilled transfer of the original source tapes to the DVD format. Four films that were hard to find in a passable format up to this point have been cleaned up and made germane to a current audience.

Lionsgate is spot on in choosing the movies that showcase a wide set of Loren’s skills as an actress, as well as providing viewers with films that are different in tone and genre from each other. This means that “Attila” showcases Loren’s struggle against eir brother, the Emperor of Italy, and eir marriage to Attila the Hun, while “Madame Sans-Gene” places Loren in a washerwoman role that is nearly the diametric opposite of the character that ey played during “Attila”. The packaging that Lionsgate has commissioned for this collection is stellar, being a plasticy, “poofy” enclosure that will ensure that the DVDs will remain safe regardless of what jostling or light damage that the case may take.

For individuals that may already have all four forms in some DVD format, Lionsgate has given individuals “Sophia Loren: La Diva Popolana”, which is a featurette showcasing Loren’s life and films that was specifically made for this collection. With The Sophia Loren and Catherine Deneuve collections that was released at the same time, I can see Lionsgate going forth and pulling the trigger on similar collections made for actors and actresses that, for whatever reasons, are not as well known today as they were during their most active periods. By righting that wrong, Lionsgate has restored Loren (and Deneuve, as readers will see in a later review) to their rightful place in the pantheon of the best actors and actresses of the last century. If you are a Loren fan, pick up this 4-Film Collection. If you want to learn why Loren is such a storied actress, pick up this set as well. Thanks, Lionsgate, for putting out such a solid collection.

Rating: 8.3/10

Sophia Loren – 4-Film Collection / 2008 Lionsgate / 448 Minutes / /

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