Director Paolo Sorrentino defends sexually explosive portrait of former prime minister, which has been called ‘a porn film without a moral issue’

Steamy sex, exotic dancers, cocaine sniffing and raucous poolside parties – the life and times of Italy’s scandal-tainted former prime minister Silvio Berlusconi would appear to be natural material for a biopic. Oscar-winning director Paolo Sorrentino has taken up the challenge, and the first instalment of his two-part film Loro (Them) was released in Italian cinemas on 24 April. The second part is due on 10 May.

Describing the inspiration behind Loro at last year’s Cannes film festival, Sorrentino said he wanted to “make a film about Italians … Berlusconi is the archetype of ‘Italianness’ and through him I can tell the Italians’ story.”

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