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La passione (1996)
Definitely a passion but not for everyone
I sat down to watch this film with great anticipation as I like Chris Rea, a nut for classic racing cars and also for everything Italian. Well, I was disappointed. This film is very slow and the story tends to meander and at times goes off at tangents. Apparently the story is semi-biographical of Chris Rea and I can understand why he would want to make it. The story centres on a young boy who has inherited his Italian father's passion for Motor Racing and in particular the Ferrari team.>SPOILER> The story culminates on the death of a racing hero,Wolfgang von Trips,(a real event)and the effect it has on the young boy. La Passione may appeal to die hard racing fans but being one,I wouldn't choose to sit through it again. There is a special feature on the video about the making of the film which is very interesting and goes into detail of how Chris Rea commissioned a replica to be built of the Ferrari "shark nose" car that was used for filming.(none of the original cars remain). I have given a vote of 5 but only for the racing footage and for the special feature.
The Talented Mr. Ripley (1999)
Talented acting in a somewhat boring film
I have just seen this film on TV.While I felt the cast were all excellent in their performances and the setting in Italy excellent, the film was a bit of a let down for me. I had in my mind all the hype from when it was released (Minghella had had recent success with The English Patient) so settled down to watch with anticipation. All throughout this film I was expecting something to happen but it never did. Sure there were some tense - ish moments when there may have been a possibility of Ripley being found out but they came and went quite quickly.The ending was very much a great let down and although it may have been shot like that to provoke thought for the viewer i'm afraid the only thought it provoked in me was "ay?". This film was boring and a waste of two and a half hours of my life.