Tigre reale

Last updated
Tigre reale
Pina Menichelli as Contessa Natka
Directed by Giovanni Pastrone
Written by Giovanni Verga
Based onTigre reale
by Giovanni Verga
Cinematography Segundo de Chomón, Giovanni Tomatis
Release date
  • November 9, 1916 (1916-11-09)
Running time
80 minutes
Languages Silent film with
Italian intertitles

Tigre reale(The royal tigress) is a 1916 silent film directed by Giovanni Pastrone under the name Piero Fosco, adapting the eponymous 1875 novel by Giovanni Verga. [1]



Giorgio La Ferlita, Italian diplomat in Paris, falls in love during a reception with the Russian countess Natka, who is told to have led to death her former lover.

Once they have become lovers, she tells him about her past. She was unhappily married, and fell in love with another man named Dolski. When her husband discovered their affair, he had his rival confined in Siberia. Natka followed Dolski in Siberia, but when she finally found him, she discovered that he was with another woman. She ran away and refused to see him any more. Desperate, he committed suicide in front of her door.

After telling Ferlita her story, the countess dismisses him and disappears. After searching in vain during a few months, the diplomat decides to marry the rich Erminia. During his engagement party, he receives a letter from Natka, asking him to join her at a hotel. He leaves the party and comes to her room to find that she has taken a poison and is shaken by convulsions. A short-circuit sets the hotel on fire and her husband, mad with jealousy, locks them in the room. They manage to escape by jumping out of the window while her husband is killed in the fire.



The film was produced by Itala Film, the company created by Carlo Rossi and Giovanni Pastrone, alias Piero Fosco.

Critical Reception

According to Eugenia Paulicelli, Pina Menichelli in Tigre Reale "is the sex symbol of Italian divas (...) and epitomizes what Fuchs has identified as the notion of appearing naked in full dress. (...) In a magisterial scene, (...) she devours a bouquet of roses, putting them in her mouth and eating them a scene that has overly sexual overtones." [2] Salvador Dali was touched by Menichelli's performance and said "In those days characterized by such a violent eroticism, palms and magnolias were bitten off and devoured by these women." [3] Catherine Ramsey-Portolano considers that Tigre Reale enforces "the role of the female character as representative of power by avoiding the association of the diva with notions of wrongdoing, accomplished through the sublimation of her responsibility and guilt into illness and suffering." [4]



Related Research Articles

<i>Rome, Open City</i> 1945 Italian war drama film

Rome, Open City is a 1945 Italian neorealist war drama film directed by Roberto Rossellini and co-written by Sergio Amidei and Federico Fellini. Set in Rome in 1944, the film follows a diverse group of characters coping under the Nazi occupation, and centers on a Resistance fighter trying to escape the city with the help of a Catholic priest. The title refers to Rome being declared an open city after 14 August 1943. It forms the first third of Rosselini's “Neorealist Trilogy”, followed by Paisan (1946) and Germany, Year Zero (1948).

Francesca Bertini Italian silent film actress (1892–1985)

Francesca Bertini was an Italian silent film actress. She was one of the most successful silent film stars in the first quarter of the twentieth-century.

Giovanni Pastrone

Giovanni Pastrone, also known by his artistic name Piero Fosco, was an Italian film pioneer, director, screenwriter, actor and technician.

<i>Thaïs</i> (1917 Italian film) 1917 film by Anton Bragaglia

Thaïs is a 1917 Italian silent film directed by Anton Giulio Bragaglia. The movie is the sole surviving Italian Futurist film, and currently kept at the Cinémathèque Française. It is not based on the novel of the same name by Anatole France.

André Deed French actor

Henri André Chapais, known as André Deed, was a French actor and director, best known for his Foolshead comedies, produced in the 1900s and 1910s. André Deed was one of the first named actors in cinema, and his film series based around Foolshead were a global success.

Pina Menichelli

Giuseppa Iolanda Menichelli, known professionally as Pina Menichelli, was an Italian actress. After a career in theatre and a series of small film roles, Menichelli was launched as a film star when Giovanni Pastrone gave her the lead role in The Fire (1916). Over the next nine years, Menichelli made a series of films, often trading on her image as a diva and on her passionate, decadent eroticism. Menichelli became a global star, and one of the most appreciated actresses in Italian cinema, before her retirement in 1924, aged 34.

Rossella Falk Italian actress (1926–2013)

Rossella Falk was an Italian actress. She had a long career and is possibly best known for appearing in by Federico Fellini in 1963.

Pet Pals is an Italian animated television series. It was created by Sergio Manfio while the Disney cartoonist Giorgio Cavazzano served as art director. Two feature films based on the series were produced: Cuccioli - Il codice di Marco Polo in 2010 and Cuccioli - Il paese del vento in 2014.

<i>Manual of Love 2</i> 2006 Italian film

Manual of Love 2 is a 2007 Italian romantic comedy film in four quartets directed by Giovanni Veronesi. It is the sequel of Manual of Love and was followed by Manual of Love 3.

<i>Sleeping Beauty</i> (1942 film) 1942 film

Sleeping Beauty is a 1942 Italian drama film directed by Luigi Chiarini and starring Luisa Ferida, Amedeo Nazzari and Osvaldo Valenti. The film was screened at the 1942 Venice Film Festival. It is based on a 1919 play by Pier Maria Rosso di San Secondo. It belongs to the movies of the calligrafismo style.

Emma Padilla

Emma Padilla was Mexico's first film star.

The Second Wife or The Second Mrs. Tanqueray is a 1922 Italian silent drama film directed by Amleto Palermi and starring Pina Menichelli, Elena Lunda and Alfredo Martinelli. It is an adaptation of Arthur Wing Pinero's 1893 British play The Second Mrs Tanqueray, about a woman who struggles to overcome rumours about her past.

<i>Juke box urli damore</i> 1959 Italian film

Juke box - Urli d'amore is a 1959 musicarello, directed by Mauro Morassi. The film stars Mario Carotenuto and the singers Mina and Adriano Celentano.

Events from the year 1890 in Italy.

Eugenia Paulicelli is a professor of Italian Studies, Comparative Literature, and Women’s Studies at Queens College and The Graduate Center, CUNY. She is also the founder and director of the Fashion Studies Program at The Graduate Center.

The Fire is a 1916 Italian silent film directed by Giovanni Pastrone. It is loosely based on the novel The Flame by Gabriele D'Annunzio.

<i>Eleven Men and a Ball</i> 1948 Italian film

Eleven Men and a Ball is a 1948 Italian sports comedy film directed by Giorgio Simonelli and starring Carlo Dapporto, Carlo Campanini and Clelia Matania.

A Husband for the Month of April is a 1941 Italian comedy film directed by Giorgio Simonelli and starring Vanna Vanni, Carlo Romano and Pina Renzi.

<i>The Dream of Butterfly</i> 1939 film

The Dream of Butterfly is a 1939 musical drama film directed by Carmine Gallone and starring Maria Cebotari, Fosco Giachetti and Germana Paolieri. It is an variation of the plot of the opera Madame Butterfly. A co-production between Italy and Germany, two separate versions were produced in the respective languages. It is also alternatively titled Madame Butterfly. It was one of several opera-related films directed by Gallone following on from Casta Diva (1935) and Giuseppe Verdi (1938).


  1. Review, synopsis and link to watch the film: "A cinema history" . Retrieved 12 June 2014.
  2. Eugenia Paulicelli, Italian Style: Fashion & Film from Early Cinema to the Digital Age, Bloomsbury Academic, 2016, p. 71.
  3. Quoted by Eugenia Paulicelli, Italian Style: Fashion & Film from Early Cinema to the Digital Age, Bloomsbury Academic, 2016, p. 71.
  4. Catherine Ramsey-Portolano, Performing Bodies: Female Illness in Italian Literature and Cinema (1860–1920), Fairleigh Dickinson University Press, 2018, p. 94, ISBN   9781683931324