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It's a pity the comedies of Carlo Verdone are not better known in the English speaking world. He was immense in Italy and his work is very approachable and very funny. Lino Banfi is the other big casualty here. How come Roberto Begnini, the only Italian comic who isn't funny, made it through? This appears to be vintage Verdone, the life he shares with his small town classical musician wife, disrupted by the arrival of sister Muti - at her most glamorous. Scola's CAPITAIN FRACASSE dates from this period.
She turns out to be a genuine crazy, while retaining the audience sympathy, as her aging lover and her trip into the Eastern European orphanages sucks in reluctant Carlo, trying to do the right thing for everyone.
The production values are superior, though we don't recognize most technician names, and the only break in the tone, which hovers just under realistic, is in the farcical interludes in Verdone's sex life abroad.
I enjoyed this one so much, I find it frustrating I can't get at the Verdone films I haven't been able to see.
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