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I live near director's town of birth, the town where this movie is set, too, and I had, last summer, the great opportunity to see how this man works, and I can say he's so nice and he tries to be calm, even when the actors (the younger ones, in particular) couldn't do that he wants.
But I've noticed an other thing: production was very very rich (in economical terms), and maybe my judge could be partial, but when I've seen this movie, I've seen a beautiful story, rich of messages and themes (family, and the incapability to repudiate that; impossibility to escape from past and nostalgia; against the drug, even if it could seem the opposite etc..), so great job as regards the screenplay; acting is good, although many actors were very young, and "for first time on screen"; photograph is quite good (some scene have a big and quite bad using of color correction), and sounds are right.
I think (joking) Virzì is happy whenever he reaches to export his accent in the world, and his own crusade includes, in my opinion, the justice for the speaking, which before him it was the same for Florence and Tuscany's Coast. In this way, actors like Mastrandrea and Pandolfi show their great capability to give a great interpretation even with a different accent (both come from Rome).
But the worst side of the movie I think it's the shoots. They aren't bad, but probably I believed Virzì's work had a greater attention for originality, and I asked me why, with the big quantity of entourage and money he had, he forgot the attention for the originality in shooting. The shoots are many times ordinary, far from other great movies, like Fellini's Amarcord, which the review Ciak had compared with this.
With an other kind of shoots (or maybe is just the video editing, I hope) which gives to movie that "ordinary taste", breaking a little part of amazing magic of the movie, this could be one of the greatest works of Virzì, because is a personal and introspective work, like Italians know to do very well.
Although this, "La Prima Cosa Bella" is able to move the spectator, and it's a good movie, but just a little better than the standard of the genre. My final vote is a 7,5.
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