Thursday, October 23, 2008

Caos Calmo (Quiet Chaos)

I patiently waited to be able to watch this movie that has great accolades in many festivals and awards; the wait was more than worth it as is truly an uplifting film, one that keeps you mesmerized with Nanni Moretti performance as well as with the story and honestly I wanted more time in the square when the movie was over.

Even when I’m saying how much I enjoyed the film have to tell you that the story is not a happy one as it is about grieving death. Based on the Sandro Veronese novel, this Antonio Luigi Grimaldi film tells about two brothers that save two women from drowning at the sea and at the same time the wife of one of them dies at their beach house. These incidents leave Pietro (Nanni Moretti) a high TV executive alone to take care of his 10-year-old daughter. When he has to take his daughter to her first school day, Pietro tells her that he will stay there until the school day is over and he does. What follows is one amazing tale about grieving, discovering, overcoming and continuing with life.

Moretti co wrote the screenplay and have to say that if you haven’t read the novel, you’ll be amazed by the process Pietro lives in a small square in front of his daughter school; but Moretti’s performance says with expressions what words never say and you will be immersed in all sort of emotions that happen as the story develops. There are many well know actors playing secondary roles, including a surprising cameo by Roman Polanski, but I believe that Moretti totally steals the movie with an excellent performance and an unforgettable character that deep inside me I truly envy his experience as one that I would loved to have when I was living the chaos of being a high executive.

The movie as a movie is beautifully shot with nothing outstanding and everything harmonious to a movie that is all about performances and the characters involved in the story. This is totally a quite chaos that moves slowly in beautiful to watch settings and people; but the loneliness and peaceful feelings in the square are so amazingly transmitted by all the scenes that happen there that everything that happens elsewhere is always resolved in the square. This is what really amazed me of the movie as a movie.

The movie not only was a commercial success in Italy but also was in competition at the 2008 Berlinale and had 11 nominations at the David di Donatello awards, winning two awards for music and the Best Supporting Actor to Alessandro Gassman that plays Pietro’s brother.

I truly enjoyed the movie as a very peaceful and uplifting experience, but I do understand that the film is not for all audiences, you really have to enjoy European cinema at least to appreciate this movie. According to what I read, some reviewers mention that the reason it became a commercial success is because a four minutes scene of raw sex between Moretti and Isabella Ferrari, that well is nothing out of this world but I do understand that after the Vatican condemned the scene, many where curious to see it. So, if you heard about this scene and want to see the movie because of it I can assure you that you’ll be disappointed.


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