organization Art Promotion

Henry IV


Italia – 1984 – 35mm – color – 85’


Regia Direction: Marco Bellocchio

Sceneggiatura Screenplay: Marco Bellocchio  in collaboration with Tonino Guerra, based on the of the same play by Luigi Pirandello

Fotografia Photography: Giuseppe Lanci

Montaggio Editing: Mirco Garrone

Scenografia Set design: Giancarlo Basili, Leonardo Scarpa

Musica Music: Astor Piazzolla

Costumi Costumes: Lina Nerli Taviani

Interpreti Cast: Marcello Mastroianni, Claudia Cardinale, Leopoldo Trieste, Paolo Bonacelli, Latou Chardons, Luciano Bartoli, Gianfelice Imparato, Claudio Spadaro, Giuseppe Cederna, Giacomo Bertozzi, Fabrizio Macciantelli, Gianluigi Sedda, Maria Loos, Luciano Branchi

Produttore Producer: Enzo Porcelli

Produzione Production: Odyssia, Rai – Radiotelevisione Italiana Rete 2



During a festive and masked horse ride, a young man suffers a serious fall caused by the Baron Belcredi, his rival in love. Gone insane for the blow, the young man assumes the identity of Henry IV of Germany, of whom he was wearing the costume at the time of the incident, and denying the present, he turns away from the woman who rejects his love and from his friends who are making a fool on him to retreat in a castle with a small group of servants. Even when he has overcome the trauma of the fall, he keeps the mask of the insane by acting the comedy of the emperor who is tormented by the excommunication of Pope Gregory VII, but in his heart which is exacerbated by the delusions and fictions of the world, he cultivates a bitter resentment and plans for revenge. This is the background of Bellocchio’s film which is inspired by the drama of Pirandello. The action begins twenty years later with a visit to the castle of the group that had once participated in the masquerade…



“Well-stylized in a sober, essential image- the beautiful photography is of Giuseppe Lanci -, Henry IV also uses the insinuating and precious music intrusions of Astor Piazzolla. The overall result, thanks also to the formidable performance of Mastroianni surrounded by worthy supporting actors such as Cardinale, Bonacelli and Trieste, is a work of linear and noble simplicity where, although Pirandello is only a fairly generic point of reference, the bizarre tale oversteps perhaps the most rigorous and strict morality of the original parable. (…)” (Sauro Borelli, L’Unità)



1984 Cannes FF –  in Competition

1984 Golden Globes, Italia: Best Actor

1985 Silver ribbons: Leopoldo Trieste  Best Supporting Actor