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In the dysfunctional Italian middle-class family Ristuccia, the middle-aged executive Carlo has a stalled life without passion, bored in his work and having a monotonous life with his wife Giulia. Giulia is a frustrated and hysterical woman because she gave up of being an actress in her youth to dedicate to the family. Their needy son Paolo feels lost and rejected, trying to find who he is and flirting with a schoolmate. Their seventeen years old daughter Valentina is decided to work in a television show, and is fighting to have an audition. When Carlo meets his former sweetheart Alessia in a class reunion, they confess to each other that their marriages are in crisis and both feel passion arising again. Meanwhile Giulia is invited to an audition in a stage production and to participate of a play. Paolo tries to make friends using marijuana in his birthday party, and Valentina has sex with different guys trying to be a dancer of the famous TV show 'Ali Babbi'. Their relationships ... Written by
Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Tell me the truth Valentina, what do you think of me? What am I like from the outside?
You know what I think about you.
Tell me anyway.
I think you're clueless and inexpressive, when you talk it sounds like you've got a rag in you mouth and people can't understand a f**k, you don't shower and you dress like a communist loser when the world goes in the opposite direction. This is what I think.
No, that's enough.
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"Remember my Name", directed by Gabriele Muccino, kept reminding this viewer about his previous film, "The Last Kiss", because in both, the main characters at the center of each story are named Carlo and Giulia. Could this 2003 has anything to do with the other one? Or was it just a coincidence? We don't get any actual fact to tie both movies together, but in a way, the two movies deal with an inner crisis that the two Carlos must face and come to terms with.
This new film has a frenetic pace in the first hour. It seems as though Giulia and Carlo's relationship is strained, despite the somehow normal family life they lead. This is a film that asks a lot from its viewers, as they try to keep pace with the quick tempo Mr. Muccino gives the picture.
It's clear to see that things aren't exactly the best between husband and wife. Carlo is at a point in his life where he can't deal with a job he doesn't care about and Giulia wants to go back to an acting career that didn't materialize when she married Carlo. Valentina, the young daughter, wants to pursue a career in television where beauty and a fast friends view her as a desired commodity. Paolo, the son, is an uncool youth who wants to belong in a world he is not cut out for.
When the gorgeous Alissia enters the picture, Carlo can't resist seeing her again; they have been lovers before, but have lost track of each other in the succeeding years. Their relationship has a negative effect on both households, as Alissia is by now married, and Carlo loses his head when he decides to quit his job and renew his relationship with Alissia. When Carlo suffers a freak accident that sends him to the hospital for a long time, Giulia and the children rally to support him. In fact, this should be something to change Carlo's attitude in forgetting Alissia, but is it? We realize the accident and his gratitude to his wife and kids will be questioned again when we see him in the final moments of the film in the supermarket where he sees Alissia with her two young children as they make last minute Christmas preparations.
Fabrizio Bentivoglio makes us care for the complex Carlo, a man whose passion has been dormant for a long time. Laura Morante, plays Giulia, the woman who has to make choices and wants to keep everyone together. Monica Belucci is seen as Alissia, the one that never stopped loving Carlo.
The movie has a great look thanks to the camera work of Marcello Montarsi. The music by Paolo Buonvino is also an asset in the film. Gabriele Muccino, with this new movie proves to be an important voice in the Italian cinema today and we await for his new film with interest.
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