I'm learning Italian, and I am concerned that the best way to learn a language is to use it in real life. Unfortunately, there are no opportunities to communicate with native Italian speakers. So the best option is to watch movies and read books in Italian. Can anyone advise some free sites with movies and books in Italian?
As another beginner, I too am always on the lookout for free content for beginners. Unfortunately, we are a limited target audience and I have yet to find satisfactory free content. Hopefully someone has some recommendations for free content!
With that out of the way, I recommend the book Italian Short Stories for Beginners by Olly Richards. This book is written for the true beginner with simple sentences and basic vocabulary. Amazon sells it in paperback for around $14 or Kindle edition for $2.99,
Although it is not free, there are some movies on Netflix (USA) in Italian. I recommend against watching these until you can comprehend lyrics from songs.
Speaking of songs, YouTube is a good and free resource for watching music videos. As a bonus, some of these have the lyrics captioned on the screen, for example L'esercito del selfie.
You should, first of all, learn basic grammar and some words, then start reading easy texts in Italian (for example: recipes, instructions, books for kids,...), then, when you feel prepared, you should try to watch TV series/YouTube videos/movies with subtitles or read books in Italian. That's how I learned 3 languages. If you just know Italian basis, I don't recommend you to watch movies or read too hard books as they can make you learn wrong things instead of right one. But, if you are at an advanced level, I suggest you read "Il fu Mattia Pascal", written by Luigi Pirandello, (you can find a lot of free-share PDFs online), it's a well-written book and it uses every-day words being, so, clear and easy to be understood. I suggest you authors like Pavese, Pirandello, Calvino, Svevo,... avoid authors born before 1900 if you are not familiar with Italian. On the other hand, suggesting movies is hard, because Italian movies have often people speaking in dialect and dialects are different from Italian and often have grammar errors (You wouldn't learn wrong grammar, would you?).
Duolingo without a doubt is one of the best options for beginners. In some cases also for advanced. Give it a try and "bocca lupo".
EDIT: the site does not contain any books or movies but it is definitely worth a shot.