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Sapience (2014)

La Sapienza (original title)
Unrated | | Drama | 24 November 2014 (Italy)
1:43 | Trailer

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At the height of his career, Alexandre decides to set off for Italy with the idea of completing of a book on Borromini. Along with his wife Alienor feels her relationship with Alexandre is ... See full summary »


Eugène Green


Eugène Green
2 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Fabrizio Rongione ... Alexandre Schmidt
Christelle Prot Christelle Prot ... Aliénor Schmidt (as Christelle Prot Landman)
Ludovico Succio ... Goffredo
Arianna Nastro Arianna Nastro ... Lavinia
Hervé Compagne Hervé Compagne ... Ministre
Sabine Ponte Sabine Ponte ... Isabelle
Gilles Tonnelé Gilles Tonnelé ... Président du Conseil
Nathalie Chazeau Nathalie Chazeau ... Femme au téléphone
Irene Fittabile Irene Fittabile ... La mère
Michele Franco Michele Franco ... Concierge de la Sapienza
Jon Firman Jon Firman ... L'Australien
Mario Bois Mario Bois ... Le réceptionniste
Clément Cogitore Clément Cogitore ... André
Chiara Malta Chiara Malta ... Maria Rosaria Vittori
Sébastien Laudenbach Sébastien Laudenbach ... Thomas Gridaine


At the height of his career, Alexandre decides to set off for Italy with the idea of completing of a book on Borromini. Along with his wife Alienor feels her relationship with Alexandre is gradually slipping away. Along the way they meet siblings Goffredo and Lavinia. Gofffredo is about to embark in architectural studies. A story of rediscover the joys of life and overcoming anxiety. Written by TV

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Unrated | See all certifications »


Official Sites:

Official site [France]


France | Italy


French | Italian | English

Release Date:

24 November 2014 (Italy) See more »

Also Known As:

Das Licht der Weisheit See more »


Box Office

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

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Company Credits

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Technical Specs




Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


Aliénor Schmidt: Ridding ourselves of the useless is perhaps the most difficult thing.
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Magnificat à 6 voix: des Vepres de la Vierge (
Magnificat", "Fecit potentiam", "Deposuit potentes", "Esurientes", Suscepit Israel")
Composed by Claudio Monteverdi
Performed by Concerto Italiano featuring Anna Simboli (soprano), Gianluca Ferrarini (alto), Raffaele Giordani (tenor), Matteo Bellotto (baritone),
Monica Piccinini (soprano), Andrea Arrivabene (alto), Luca Dordolo (tenor), Salvo Vitale (baritone)
Directed by Rinaldo Alessandrini
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User Reviews

Light and lyrical--perfect for cinephiles and those loving love.
18 June 2015 | by jdesandoSee all my reviews

Love is difficult enough in any language and art form, so layer a French film in a Swiss-Italian setting (Ticino is in southern Switzerland) with an architecture motif, and you have an insight into what makes it all work—light. La Sapienza will indeed make you wise if it doesn't confound you with its arty dialogue.

Most of the screenplay is poignantly presented with slow theatricality, sometimes as if the characters were in a documentary talking directly into the camera. But American-French writer-director Eugene Green brings powerful emotions out of his four principals even when they speak without an ounce of naturalism. Love is in the words aided by the light.

The middle-aged architect, Alexandre (Fabrizio Rongione) is visiting Ticino to study the work of 17th century Baroque architect Francesco Borromini and to be inspired. The charming Bernini would have been a better inspiration than the melancholic Borromini, but, hey, our architect captures a good vibe no matter.

His wife, Alienore (Christelle Prot), a group psychoanalyst, loves the introverted scholar even dispelling the overtures of a very young architect, Goffredo (Ludovico Succio), the purveyor of the light philosophy to her and her husband. Completing the foursome is Goffredo's pre-Raphaelite-like sister, Lavinia (Arianna Nastro), who gives Alienore more strength to love and live than she already has.

Architecture becomes more than enveloping space as it provides the angle of light to incite true love. Unsurprisingly, the loving brother and sister (close to too loving) have much to teach about the purity of love and the love of architecture. La Sapienza is a moving tone poem, albeit eccentric in dialogue and light on conflict.

In contrast with Noah Baumbach's comedy, While We're Young, which has a younger couple confounding the adults, La Sapienza is witty and accessible, entertaining and underplayed. A wise summer choice in a spectacular but droll European setting. Light even if it sounds heavy under my keystrokes.

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