Bil’s rating (out of 5): BBBBB.
Italy, 2004. R&C Produzioni, Ministero per i Beni e le Attività Culturali. Screenplay by Vincenzo Marra. Cinematography by Mario Amura. Produced by Tilde Corsi, Gianni Romoli. Production Design by Giuseppe Pirrotta. Costume Design by Daniela Ciancio. Film Editing by Luca Benedetti.
A young Neapolitan watches his life crumble around him as his father’s unemployment continues to drain his spirit and his mother’s backbreaking work as a seamstress never helps them make ends meet. The boy joins the army and life seems to improve once his career starts to go well, but there’s nothing like life to throw a few surprises at you and make you deal with all manner of events. This powerful, quietly brilliant film recalls the work of Ermanno Olmi in its devastatingly simple style of storytelling. The actors are incredibly real, giving deeply probing performances that say volumes of information about their characters without using much in the way of dialogue. Steady and slow without ever being tiresome or dull, this beautiful examination of human struggle will not be easily forgotten.
Toronto International Film Festival: 2004