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A Summer in Genoa (2008)
"Genova" (original title)

 -  Drama | Horror | Mystery  -  27 March 2009 (UK)
6.1
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Ratings: 6.1/10 from 4,413 users  
Reviews: 48 user | 68 critic

A man moves his two daughters to Italy after their mother dies in a car accident, in order to revitalize their lives. Genova changes all three of them as the youngest daughter starts to see the ghost of her mother, while the older one discovers her sexuality.

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Title: A Summer in Genoa (2008)

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Joe
...
...
...
Hope Davis ...
Marianne
Margherita Romeo ...
Rosa
Alessandro Giuggioli ...
Lorenzo
Dante Ciari ...
Fabio
Gherardo Crucitti ...
Mauro
Monica Bennati ...
Monica
Angelica Moretti ...
Angelica
Carlo Moretti ...
Carlo
...
Susanna
James Laurenson ...
Marianne's Father
...
Danny
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Storyline

How do children respond to tragedy? On an icy road near Chicago, Marianne dies in a crash, leaving Joe and their daughters, Kelly, about 16, and Mary, about 9. That summer, a friend from Joe's graduate student days, 20 years before, arranges a teaching job for him in Genoa. When they arrive in June, Joe starts teaching and the girls have the summer before school starts: Kelly quickly falls in with youths her age; their club and beach life leads to sexual awakening. Mary, burdened by guilt for her mother's death, is solitary. The girls take piano lessons, Mary draws, and she also sees and talks to her mother. Joe asks them, "Are you okay?", but is that enough? Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

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We all need a place to start again.


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language, some sexuality and drug use | See all certifications »

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Details

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Release Date:

27 March 2009 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

A Summer in Genoa  »

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Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Goofs

On their way from the airport, when they pass in the car in front of a fresco of Saint George fighting against the dragon, Ms. Keener says that Saint George is the Saint Patron of Genova. Now, it's true that Saint George has a strong link to the history of the city: the banner bears the cross of Saint George, in the middle ages the Bank which funded expeditions overseas (by the way it's the building that shows the fresco seen in the movie) was named after Saint George etc. but the Patron of Genova, since XIII century, is John the Baptist and he came to be after Genoese crusaders (First crusade) brought back from Holy Land his ashes, which are still kept in the Cathedral. See more »

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User Reviews

 
Look Below the Surface of this Story
6 May 2009 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Genova is an incisively directed, beautifully lit, and exquisitely acted film that quickly moved into my top five all-time favorites list. A family suffering the sudden death of a beloved mother takes a journey to Genova, ostensibly to get away from their sadness and heal from their grief, and that is exactly what happens. But it is for you, the viewer, to grasp the metaphors of the maze-like streets of the city, the spirit of the mother who lingers, and the beautiful frescoes that reveal different aspects with each viewing.

I won't give away the ending - it's not obvious, only subtly powerful. But I will say that the grieving survivors act the way any of us would in such circumstances - we get on with our day to day lives, all the while trying to figure out what has happened to us and find meaning in it. Through it all we experience fear, guilt, avoidance, anger, confusion and loneliness. We hold onto memories, good and bad. We sometimes cling to each other and sometimes reject offers of comfort so we can work out our grief in the best way we know and survive the process. We end up different, still imperfect, but we heal and move along on our life path. If you are looking for an obvious plot, and someone to spoon feed you the meaning of this film, don't bother - you won't like it. If you have ever experienced sudden grief, you will understand it easily.

Colin Firth gives one of his best performances in this film. He has a generous way, in his serious roles, of portraying just enough knowledge of his characters to draw the viewer in and allow us to invest a lot of our own emotions into the progress of the character and his eventual outcome. That's Firth's great talent which is missed my so many who would rather have it all explained to them. I prefer the small space that Firth beckons us to enter. I watch this film often, and he and Winterbottom show me a new level, a new meaning, a new view of life's frescoes each time I see it.


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Not to be rude - I found it boring. inktomike
DON'T LOOK NOW nicniewart
Why is it called 'Geneva'? EthanHurlington
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Is this a love story? Miracle237
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