Everything from action and drama, to forbidden love and desire

Looks like we’re all set for a whole bunch of contemporary films this June, seeing how the Mexican Film Festival is returning for its fourth edition, and the upcoming Italian Film Festival running in the same week from Jun 1-9 at Golden Village (GV) Plaza Singapura and The Projector. Brought to you by the Embassy of Italy of Singapore, the selection of some of the best of Italian contemporary cinema this year has been featured at top film festivals like Cannes and Berlin. 

There's even a segment dedicated solely to film director Luca Guadagnino, who has managed to capture so beautifully the innermost desires of his films' characters. So if you’re dying from Call Me By Your Name withdrawals, or in need for a good film to pick your brain, this is the place to be. 

Io Sono L'amore / I Am Love (Jun 1, 8:30pm, The Projector)

This is the first of Guadagnino's self-described "Desire" trilogy, starring Tilda Swinton as Emma Recchi, a Russian matriarch and mother of three who's about to take over a family business. With feelings of unfulfillment, she meets Antonio, a skillful chef and unfortunately, her son's friend, which stirs something inside her.

Call Me By Your Name (Jun 3, 8pm, The Projector)

If you haven't already seen this masterpiece, you're missing out. While we were upset that Guadagnino and the gang didn't bag any awards at this year's Golden Globes despite having three nominations, we were happy that it at least won the well-deserved Best Adapted Screenplay award at the Oscars. Based on the novel of the same title by Andre Aciman, this coming-of-age romance classic tells the tale two people who circumnavigate their feelings on borrowed time. Read our review here.

Veloce Come Il Vento / Italian Race (Jun 4, 7pm, GV)

More than just a story of high-octane action and Italian GT racing, this film, loosely based on the story of Italian rally racing driver Carlo Capone, is one about family. Giulia De Martino's family has always had a penchant for engines; she herself is an exceptional driver who competed in the GT Championship at just 17, under her father's guidance. But one day, her life goes off the track and she realizes she can only rely on her brother Loris—now a druggie and former rally champion—who one day decided to return into her family's lives.

Napoli Velata / Naples in Veils (Jun 5, 7pm, GV)

Sex, desire, secrets and mystery. These are the ingredients for Turkish-Italian filmmaker Ferzan Ozpetek's noir film, which centers itself on a Naples-based coroner in her forties named Adriana. At an occult Neopolitan ceremony involving "femminielli", she catches the seductive gaze of a charming young man. They hit it off immediately and spend a night together at her place. She asks to meet again the next day but she gets stood up. The following day, she finally meets him again, but this time on an autopsy table. An investigation follows, and so does another mysterious man who looks like Andrea and appears in her life.

La Pazza Gioia / Like Crazy (Jun 7, 7pm, GV)

A soft take on mental health, Paolo Virzi returns with this heartwarming film that follows two women who are patients at a mental institution. While they have very different backstories and reasons to how they ended up there, a chance to escape the facility brings together this unpredictable and unlikely pair, bringing them on an epic life-changing adventure where they will learn more about themselves and forever changing their lives.