in recent years, the story of Italian magistrate Giovanni Falcone has been told and retold many times. Some of those productions are loosely based on the truth, others come very close to a documentary.
Solidly directed by the brothers Andrea Frazzi and Antonio Frazzi (Andrea died before this production was released), 'Giovanni Falcone, l'uomo che sfidò Cosa Nostra' is more than just a recording of the happenings in Italy between 1980 and 1992. It has become an emotional statement, and admiration of Giovanni Falcone and the people surrounding him.
Where 'Giovanni Falcone, l'uomo che sfidò Cosa Nostra' differs from other productions, is that the mafia is completely faceless. Some mafioso appear, but they are only instruments, and only the names of the politicians are named. That none of the top-people are portrayed on the side of the mafia, makes their presence only scarier.
Constantly in focus are Massimo Dapporto as Falcone and Elena Sofia Ricci as Francesca Morvillo, the love of his life. 99% of the viewers already know how the story will end, and instead of taking each step of the life of both, we take their relationship and the strength that came from it. I must admit that I found this very romantic. I don't know both actors, but they preformed very well.
The rest of the cast shows many regulars. If you saw "Il capo dei capi" like I did, you'll recognize many faces. This happens with many Italian production of crime related series; especially if you've seen La Piovra.
The camera-work is very adept; it's not really dramatic and it has a bleak look, so it's closer to La Piovra and La Scorta than most modern productions that tend to over-use a yellow sepia for Sicily. The editing is text-book perfect; there is nothing special here, but it matches the pacing of the series perfectly.
I would like to mention Morricone's soundtrack. It's a little bit the regular work the man has done for 40 years, but that doesn't make it less excellent. There only seems to be written one dramatic piece, and it appears and re-appears lots of times, but never bothers. Morricone scored this series a bit on the safe side, but still moved me. Doesn't happen much that you can mention both 'usual' and 'excellent', but with Morricone, this applies again and again.
Not all aspects of the life of Giovanni Falcone are told here. In some films, some things are done better, others things seems weaker. If you don't know which version you'd like to watch; this series is a sure bet. If you already saw Giovanni Falcone, Faclone(Excellent Cadavers), Il Capo dei Capi, La Scorta and even Il Divo and aren't really hungry for more depth in the same subject, you might want to give this one a pass. If you want another take of the same story, just enjoy this one.
A strong production that has it's own quality, but might suffer from all the competition out there.
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