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'The Best Offer' Wins Big at Italy's Nastri d'Argento Awards

The Best Offer - Film Still - Sylvia Hoecks and Geoffrey Rush
Hoecks and Rush in "The Best Offer"

The English-language drama from Oscar winner Giuseppe Tornatore continued its roll with six awards at Europe's oldest film honors.

ROME – Giuseppe Tornatore’s The Best Offer was the big winner at the 67th Nastri d’Argento (Silver Ribbon) awards -- Europe’s oldest film honors -- taking home prizes in six of the nine categories in which it was entered, including best score for iconic composer Ennio Morricone and best film.

The drama, directed by the Oscar-winning director of Nuovo Cinema Paradiso, tells the story of an eccentric auctioneer (Oscar winner Geoffrey Rush) who becomes obsessed with a reclusive heiress (Sylvia Hoeks). Best Offer earlier dominated Italy’s David di Donatello awards, and it has been selected as Film of the Year by the upcoming Ischia Global Music & Film Festival.

STORY: Sorrentino, Tornatore Dominate Nominees at Europe's Oldest Film Awards 

The Hollywood Reporter’s Deborah Young praised The Best Offer as Tornatore’s “astutely written return to English-language genre film, where is baroque excesses get worked into the plot.”

Miele, the directorial debut from actress Valeria Golino, Reality from Matteo Garone and Paolo Sorrentino’s La Grande bellezza (The Great Beauty) were the other big winners for the awards, which are voted on by Italy’s National Syndicate of Journalists.

Miele, which premiered in Cannes’ Un Certain Regard sidebar, where it won the jury prize, stars Jasmine Trinca as a do-gooder who must confront an acquaintance’s deep-seeded melancholy. It won awards in half of the six categories in which it was nominated, led by a best actress honor for Trinca and a best emerging director prize for Golino, best known for her role in Barry Levinson’s Rain Man.

Reality, which won a Cannes jury prize last year, Garrone’s second, recounts the story of a unremarkable fish seller (Aniello Arena in his big-screen debut) who is set to appear on a reality TV program. The film won prizes in three of the four categories in which it was nominated, including best screenplay and a best actor prize for Arena.

La grande bellezza won in four of nine categories. The film, a portrait of contemporary Rome through the eyes of an aging writer, played by Toni Servillo, saw supporting actors Carlo Verdone and Sabrina Ferilli collect awards.

It was previously announced that Bernardo Bertolucci’s Io e te (You and Me) and Servillo would be given honorary prizes at the event, held in Taormina’s famous Teatro Antico venue, the site of Sicily’s 59-year-old Taromina Film Festival.

Twitter: @EricJLyman