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Film Critics: Today, December 13, winners from Dallas ForthWorthFCA, ChicagoFCA and Film Comment Magazine. Nominations from HoustonFCS, PhoenixCC. PhoenixFCS.

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

La Sconosciuta (The Unknown)


I just finished watching this excellent movie and I am just exhausted! So intense, a true masterpiece! Gee Italian movies are just fantastic and I am having the time of my life watching these outstanding movies.

Let’s start with the easy part, the music by Ennio Moriconne is gorgeous and follows the movie within all its parts. This soundtrack is a keeper if I find it in these parts of the world.

This outstanding film by Guiseppe Tornatore, that directed and co-wrote the script, has two parts according to me; the first part is a thriller that crisps your nerves wondering what’s coming next, the second part is a strong drama. In the first part there is no drama and in the second part there is no thriller, it seems like two different movies but telling one and only one story. This is a great effect that plays with all your emotions and senses.

Going back to the music, in the first part Ennio Moriconne has a score that is reminiscent of many Hitchcock movies increasing the suspense of the thriller.

Xeniya Rappoport plays Irena -the unknown- and gives a magnificent performance as the lead in the thriller and greater performance as the lead in the drama part of the story. Somehow it seems like two different actresses were playing the role, but it is the same one, of course.

If the name Giuseppe Tornatore sounds familiar it may be because he also did Nuovo Cinema Paradiso and Malena, two great movies that I had the pleasure to have seen and enjoyed very much and are winners of multiple awards including the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language film for Nuovo Cinema Paradiso.

Maybe by now you would like to know what story this movie tells… I am tempted not to tell, but I will give you some hints. It is about a woman that finds a job as a cleaning lady to a wealthy Italian family and her dark and dangerous past catches up with her. That’s it. Well, that’s all I knew before watching it and not knowing more helped to enjoy it more. Try not to read more about this movie, just watch it.

With this movie I have two more to go, In Memoria di Me and Il Registra di Matrimoni, then I will have watched all the Nastri D’Argento movies for the top prize. Up-to-today I think the top honor has go to this movie or maybe Saturno Contro, unless the above two are big surprises.

Do not miss this movie, is a must be seen… even if at moments is quite disturbing to watch.

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