Bil’s rating (out of 5): BB.
Original title: Il Cuore Altrove
Alternate titles: A Heart Elsewhere
Italy, 2003. Duea Film, Rai Cinema, Ministero per i Beni e le Attività Culturali. Screenplay by Pupi Avati. Cinematography by Pasquale Rachini. Produced by Antonio Avati. Music by Riz Ortolani. Production Design by Simona Migliotti. Costume Design by Mario Carlini, Francesco Crivellini. Film Editing by Amedeo Salfa.
A shy bachelor professor of Latin and Greek moves to a gentlemen’s rooming house in Bologna and away from the bustle of Rome in order to find himself a wife. His roommate takes him to a convent where the sisters host a dance every Sunday afternoon that allows the blind women they take care of to enjoy a turn on the floor with one of the town’s local men. Our hero falls in love with a recently blinded young woman named Angela who immediately bewitches him. She then convinces him to help her tie the loose ends in her life that were left gaping when her former fiance dumped her following the accident that handicapped her. Pupi Avati doesn’t infuse this mundane, predictable story with the magic that The Best Man benefited from, instead making a shallow version of Giuseppe Tornatore’s most mawkishly sentimental films, from The Starmaker to Malena. The film’s tone is sticky-sweet instead of romantic, and the lead female character is too typical a wolverine-in-sheep’s-clothing to be likable (while all the other women are annoyingly domestic). Features a fiery supporting turn by Giancarlo Giannini as the professor’s father and a cameo by Sandra Milo, most famous for her role as Marcello Mastroianni’s mistress in Fellini’s 8 1/2.
Cannes Film Festival: In Competition
Toronto International Film Festival: 2003