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Everybody's Fine (1990)
"Stanno tutti bene" (original title)

 -  Drama  -  31 May 1991 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.7/10 from 1,782 users  
Reviews: 14 user | 4 critic

Matteo Scuro is a retired Sicilian bureaucrat (responsible mainly for the writing of birth certificates), a widower with five children, all of whom live on the mainland and hold responsible... See full summary »


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Valeria Cavalli ...
Marino Cenna ...
Norma Martelli ...
Roberto Nobile ...
Matteo Lo Piparo
Mariangela Randazzo
Gaia Restino
Paride Zappala
Leo Gullotta ...
Matteo's Mother
Nicola Di Pinto
Sylvie Fennec


Matteo Scuro is a retired Sicilian bureaucrat (responsible mainly for the writing of birth certificates), a widower with five children, all of whom live on the mainland and hold responsible jobs. He decides to surprise each with a visit and finds none as he imagined. The film is a veritable travelogue across contemporary Italy, as Matteo journeys to Naples, Rome, Florence, Milan, and Turin to search for each of his children; he even spends one night on the streets among the homeless. Scuro returns to Sicily, visits his wife's grave, and reports with irony that "stanno tutti bene." Written by <>

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Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some nudity | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:




| |


Release Date:

31 May 1991 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Everybody's Fine  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$1,745,470 (USA)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Edited into Lo schermo a tre punte (1995) See more »

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User Reviews

Everybody Is Fine or How We All Become Out of Focus in An Indifferent World
3 December 2006 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Mateo Scuro, like his name, is in the dark. Both symbolically and really. With his thick-lens glasses, Mateo looks out at a world that has become distorted by progress, poor eyesight and the reality of being forgotten. A pensioner who has not seen his children in years, Mateo says goodbye to his wife in Sicily and travels to the mainland of Italy to begin a journey to see his five children. He wants to surprise them and so he does not tell them of his plans. But the real surprises are waiting for Mateo.

Traveling from one city to the next, Mateo calls on each child with great anticipation to see the meaningful impact they are having on Italian life. But life quickly hits Mateo squarely between the eyes and forces him to see clearly. Each child is hiding something from their father who does not see well. Their lives are not what they appear to be. They are unhappy working in menial jobs or with their relationships. But their real secret is the crushing blow for a doting father. The youngest son, Alvaro, has committed suicide and none of the others can bring themselves to telling their father the truth.

Toward the end of Tornatore's cinematic statement about the isolation of being forgotten, Mateo and his two surviving sons meet for dinner. His daughters, grandchildren and of course, Alvaro, are not present. This staple of Italian life and joy, the family table, now becomes Mateo's nightmare when he learns of Alvaro's death.

Tornatore is a master of the dream sequence. In the tradition of Fellini and Wertmueller, Tornatore give us insight into Mateo's deepest fears of losing his family through a dream. We see a large, black balloon, with tether ropes hanging down, descend on a beach where Mateo, his wife and children are playing years before. As this balloon descends, picks up his children and carries them away, Mateo runs to them but cannot reach them. He watches them float away into the sky. This foreshadowing of Mateo's life comes to fruition when at the film's end, Mateo is in a hospital room recovering from an episode of what can only be interpreted as the most profound disappointment of all--the loss of one's family.

Upon returning home, the camera is looking into the eyes of Mateo as he recounts to his wife the details of his trip. However as the camera pans back, we see that Mateo is speaking to the headstone of the grave where his wife is buried. As he answers his wife's imagined question of how the children are, Mateo answers, "Stanno tutti bene" (Everyone's fine).

Tornatore uses dream sequences and the symbolism of being out of focus as well as in the dark with masterful irony. These images are driven home with all the force of a sledge hammer as the director takes the viewer, through Mateo, on a journey of anticipated-joys, awakenings and ultimate disillusions.

Mateo's dreams, failing eyesight and loneliness are his steadfast companions through his remaining years. Tornatore paints a picture for the viewer of life as a deception from the most unlikeliest of sources--those we love the most. For Mateo, being in the dark is the best kind of medicine he could hope for--a world where Stanno Tutti Bene.

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