In Genoa, Agata runs her bookstore and, without meaning to, causes light bulbs and appliances to burn out. At the same time that a younger man declares his attraction to her, her brother ... See full summary »
Gianni is a middle-aged man living in Rome with his imposing and demanding elderly mother. His only outlet from her and the increasing debt into which they are sinking, are the increasingly... See full summary »
Gianni Di Gregorio
Valeria De Franciscis,
Overburdened and stuck in a greying marriage, Giovanna takes to caring for the Jewish Holocaust survivor her husband brings home. As she begins to reflect on her life, she turns to the man who lives across from her ...
A study of the friendship between two contemporary Italian women. One is a pharmacist from the affluent North East, while the other is an impoverished shop assistant living in the South ... See full summary »
A brilliant recent graduate struggles to find work. After falling into a babysitting job, she is introduced by the child's mother to the world of the international call center, its employees, and the fast pace that drives them.
AIDS doctor Antonia's husband is killed by a car. She gets depressed until she learns he had been cheating on her with a man. Following her newly born curiosity for life, she goes to see ... See full summary »
When her father, Giancarlo is transferred to Rome from the small country town of Montalto Di Castro, Caterina, a 12 years old girl, will discover her new classmates, a totally new world, an... See full summary »
Life is often just "for sake of" and we need to know about it and want to benefit when we are presented with the occasion to. A bit for "sake of", a bit for choice, Rosalba, young and apart from anything a housewife of Pescara, during a bus trip after she found herself alone and...forgotten in a highway café, decides not to wait for her husband and sons to come back to pick her up but instead decides to find her own way home. She is a little offended that she has been forgotten by her family and has been told by her husband to stay put so, rebelling a little she finds herself hitch-hiking direct for Venice. Her adventure in Venice begins meeting strange but fascinating people. Fermo; an anarchistic florist, Grazia; a masseuse and Fernando; a waiter from Iceland that speaks his own language of Italian. Written by
I fell in love again with Italy and European mature-woman idolatry.
Recently Charlotte Rampling in `Under the Sand' and Tilda Swinton in `The Deep End' remind us that European cinema has long portrayed middle-age women as desirable in a way immature American men are unaccustomed, so conditioned are we to a youth culture that adores naughty teenage waifs and jaded 20-somethings.
Now the Italian `Bread and Tulips' introduces us to the attractive Licia Maglietta as the middle-aged housewife refugee finding love and friendship in Venice. Although the setup of this film left me fidgeting for action, when I saw her liberated from her family and slowly begin her renewal, I fell in love again with Italy and European mature-woman idolatry. I don't know if it's the ample breasts, knowing smiles, or willingness to sass that gets my attention, or maybe all of the above. I do know 2 hours of these savvy women are far more satisfying than any days with Julia Roberts or Kirsten Dunst.
Let me not ignore the true man in this tale: Bruno Ganz, the angel from `Wings of Desire,' plays brooding waiter Fernando, ready at any moment to hang himself until Rosealba renews his love of love and epic verse. Ganz is a marvel of understated acting, a perfect companion to the romantic Rosealba.
The inevitable comparison between director Silvio Soldini and Woody Allen, with their genial sense of city and women, is appropriate, especially considering the similarity between Soldini's romantic Venice and Allen's lyrical Paris in `Everyone Says I Love You.'
`Bread and Tulips' received several David Di Donatello Awards, the Italian version of the Oscars, for best picture, actor, actress, supporting actor, supporting actress, director, and three others. To see Rosealba go from frumpy mom to bohemian accordion and tulip player is worth wading through a boring Wayne Knight, wanabee plumber cum detective or over the top, philandering, bourgeois bathroom fixtures magnate husband. Some of this stuff is downright dull slapstick, a little like the sophomoric stumbling of `Life is Beautiful,' but when Rosealba smiles, it's very good.
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