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USA: Avatar Films
UK: Axiom Films
Cast: Angela Gheorghiu, Roberto Alagna, Ruggero Raimondi, David Cangelosi, Sorin Coliban, Enrico Fissore, Maurizio Muraro, Gwynne Howell, James Savage-Hanford
Director: Benoit Jacquot
Countries: France / Germany / Italy / UK
Language: Italian (English subtitles)
UK: 124 mins
UK Certificate: PG contains mild violence
USA Release Date: 2 August 2002 (Limited Release - Los Angeles)
USA Release Date: 12 July 2002 (Limited Release - New York)
UK Release Date: 10 May 2002
Act I - The painter Mario Cavaradossi (Roberto Alagna), who is working in Sant'Andrea della Valle Church, helps a political prisoner who has taken refuge there. He conceals the fact to Tosca (Angela Gheorghiu) a famous prima donna and his jealous mistress, who has come to meet him. Then he takes the prisoner to his villa just before the arrival of the head-policeman Scarpia (Ruggero Raimondi). The latter, suspicious about Mario, makes Tosca believe that her lover is unfaithful, and Tosca is followed when she rushes to Mario's villa.
Act II - Scarpia has dinner at Palazzo Farnese, where there is a celebration in which Tosca sings. Spoletta (David Cangelosi), Scarpia's right-hand man, arrives with Mario who has been arrested. The latter is tortured. Tosca, summoned by Scarpia, can't stand the torturing and reveals where the fugitive is hidden. Mario has deserved the death sentence, but Scarpia promises Tosca his life will be spared (his execution will only be simulated) provided she gives herself to him. Tosca pretends to consent but, when Scarpia comes near her, she stabs him.
Act III - At down, Mario is waiting for his execution on the terrace-roof of Castel Sant'Angelo. Tosca arrives and tells him she killed Scarpia. His execution will be shammed, but he'll have to simulate death as best he can.
The firing squad arrives and shoots at him, Mario falls down, the squad withdraws. Tosca runs to her lover : she realises in horror he has been actually shot dead! Spoletta comes up to arrest her, and Tosca hurls herself into empty space.
French director Benoit Jacquot has both directed and written the screenplay of the famous opera by Giacomo Puccini in his film TOSCA.