«Figli», an unsettling and courageous Italian film
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An unsettling and courageous Italian film is the great protagonist of the weekend in theaters: it is ” Figli “, a feature film inspired by the monologue “I figli grow old” by Mattia Torre , screenwriter and director who became famous for the “Boris” series, who died prematurely at the aged 47 last July after a long illness. The direction of the film was entrusted to Giuseppe Bonito , Torre’s assistant who was called to a difficult task. At the heart of the story is a couple like many, Nicola and Sara, with a six year old daughter. Their life goes on smoothly until the birth of the second son Pietro, which will cause a series of imbalances in family dynamics. Through a script that knows how to be personal and universal at the same time, Torre has created a credible and interesting narrative base, in which it is easy to reflect and in which it is equally simple to remain involved.

Tragedy and comedy

By mixing the tragic with the comedian, the script alternates between different emotions, managing to be incisive, thanks to a short circuit between particularly humorous and other decidedly more distressing situations. Mediocre moments are rare and not very successful in this design as a whole full of ideas and reflections, as well as having a very rare personality for today’s Italian cinema, capable of confirming the talent for writing that Mattia Torre had. Good performance also for the two protagonists Valerio Mastandrea and Paola Cortellesi, credible from start to finish. Inspired by the stories of his grandfather, Mendes recounts the First World War and focuses on the mission of two soldiers of the British army, called to cross the enemy lines to bring a message that could save 1600 men. There has been a lot of talk about how the mission of the two protagonists is told with a single sequence-sequence (in reality they are two, since there is an ellipse with a black screen that makes the story go from day to night), even if with evident fittings made thanks to digital. The technical choice is undoubtedly fascinating and the visual spectacle is not lacking, but it does not seem justified neither by the temporal structure of the story, nor by a real need that does not go beyond the pretext of the simple exercise of style. Some moments (thanks to Roger Deakins’ photography) are pure cinema of the highest level, but for a good part of the vision one has the impression of being in front of a video game rather than a film, which he cannot excite as he would have liked. In fact, there are few scenes with high adrenaline (the beginning of the night part is still masterful in this sense), while in most situations there is the feeling of having to do with a very studied and not too sincere product. In any case, a film to be seen, which will make you discuss and on which it is important to have your own opinion. A film to be taken or left, which undoubtedly has big hits, but an overall design with a high risk of overvaluation.

Just Charlie

A mention also for Rebekah Fortune’s “Just Charlie” , a film with a far from trivial plot. The protagonist is a teenager with a great talent for football, to the point of being called by a very important team like Manchester City . Charlie, however, has an irrefutable secret: he is happy only when, secretly, he dresses as a woman, feeling trapped in the body of a male. There is the theme of identity at the basis of this interesting feature film gratis, even if unable to fully develop all the ideas launched in the first part. More engaging in the subject than in the actual narrative development (a bit course in several passages), it is a curious and ambitious product, which is, however, in part a missed opportunity, given the considerable starting material.