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La Tosca (also known as Tosca) is a 1973 Italian comedy-drama film written and directed by Luigi Magni.[1] It is loosely based on the drama with the same name by Victorien Sardou, reinterpreted in an ironic-grotesque style.[2]

La Tosca
La Tosca (film).jpg
Directed byLuigi Magni
Produced byUgo Tucci
Written byVictorien Sardou (play), Luigi Magni (story and screenplay)
StarringMonica Vitti, Gigi Proietti, Vittorio Gassman, Aldo Fabrizi
Music byArmando Trovajoli
CinematographyFranco Di Giacomo
Edited byRuggero Mastroianni
Distributed byTitanus
Release date
  • 1973 (1973)
Running time
104 minutes
LanguageItalian, Roman dialect



Rome, 14 June 1800. Napoleon's army threatens to conquer Italy, including the Papal States. Rome is reeking with corruption, especially among the clergy, determined to retain their privileges based on the exploitation of the poor ignorant people.

The fugitive patriot Cesare Angelotti, escaped from Castel Sant'Angelo, is sheltered by painter Mario Cavaradossi. Baron Scarpia, regent of the Pontifical Police, hunts him down by duping Floria Tosca, Cavaradossi's mistress, into thinking that her lover is cheating on her. The woman, trailed by Scarpia, heads for Cavaradossi's house, hoping to catch him in the act, but finds him instead in Angelotti's company. Realizing she's been deceived, Tosca tries her best to save her lover, but it is too late. Scarpia reaches the house and surprises Angelotti, who commits suicide rather than being taken in.

Scarpia then arrests the painter for high treason, a capital offense. Lusting after Tosca, the baron blackmails her: he will have the painter freed if she yields to his sexual advances. She accedes, whereupon he makes a show of ordering his minions to have the painter shot with blanks. The letter of safe conduct written, Scarpia is then stabbed in the back by Tosca, who then bolts off to Castel Sant'Angelo to be reunited with her lover. However, Cavaradossi is executed for real, and Tosca, in despair, throws herself off the ramparts of the castle and commits suicide.

Life in Rome continues seemingly unchanged, with the clergy oblivious to the new times looming, and the changes about to overtake the world.



  1. ^ Enrico Giacovelli. Un secolo di cinema italiano. Lindau, 2002.
  2. ^ Paolo Mereghetti. Il Mereghetti: dizionario dei film 2002. Baldini & Castoldi, 2001.

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