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Based on the true story of Edgardo Mortara, this gripping narrative unfolds in 1858 when the Pope’s soldiers storm into the home of the Mortara family in the Jewish Quarter, tasked with seizing their seven-year-old son, Edgardo. The reason: Edgardo had been secretly baptized as an infant, and according to papal laws of the time, he must undergo a Catholic upbringing. Distraught, Edgardo’s parents are determined to do whatever it takes to reclaim their son.

Supported by public opinion and the international Jewish community, the Mortaras‘ struggle quickly escalates into a political showdown. As they seek to regain custody of Edgardo, their plight poses a challenge to the increasingly wavering power of the 19th-century papacy. The clash between the papacy and the forces of democracy and unification paints a vivid portrait, offering a thought-provoking narrative with resonant implications for 21st-century audiences.

Sponsored by:
Aron and Neri Tischler
Moshe Mastai
Tamara Frankel
Gary Averbach

Festivals and Awards

  • Winner: Palm d'Or - Cannes Film Festival, 2023
  • Winner: Best Director - Goldent Rooster Awards, 2023
  • Winner: Best Actor - Goldent Rooster Awards, 2023
  • Winner: Best Film - Italian National Syndicate of Film Journalists, 2023
  • Winner: Best Director - Italian National Syndicate of Film Journalists, 2023

Screening Details

Film Info

CountryItaly, France, Germany
DirectorMarco Bellocchio
CastEnea Sala, Leonardo Maltese, Fausto Russo Alesi
Runtime 135 min
LanguageItalian, Hebrew, Latin w/English subtitles
Genre , ,