Haunted by a horrible past, a young Ukrainian woman calculatedly insinuates herself into the life of a rich Italian family.Haunted by a horrible past, a young Ukrainian woman calculatedly insinuates herself into the life of a rich Italian family.Haunted by a horrible past, a young Ukrainian woman calculatedly insinuates herself into the life of a rich Italian family.
When people talk about a film by Giuseppe Tornatore, they think of Sicily first with it's burning sun and it's orange villages. This is one of his darker films, if not his darkest (on par with Il Camorrista).
As sound as the first fade in of this film appeared, I was hooked. I will not spoil anything, but you'll see some pretty powerful stuff. The story is complicated and important, so giving examples might spoil something, so I focus on the experience of this film itself.
I have never seen most of the actors in this (except Placido), but they all did an amazing job. Kseniya Rappoport is so great in this film that it's just haunting. Her performance is a winner without doubt, but the supportive cast never seems shy to make their emotions as real as they can.
The shots that this film uses are great. All Tornatore films are beautiful, but this one is a real dark gem. As him and few other can do, he makes the world real.
The script is strong. I cannot just define it as a drama, because that is a vague term. It's also a disturbing film with a warm touch (a heartbreaking plot that twists in a good way).
Ennio Morricone wrote the score. I am a great fan of him and I must say that even now, being 77, he is still the top composer in the entire industry. With his score for La Sconosciuta he surprised me. Again. This man is so amazing that I curse the Academy awards every day for ignoring him for more than 40 years.
So is there nothing bad about La Sconosciuta? Yes there is; the DVD is only available in Italy. I bought one with English subtitles so I have little problem watching it, but this can be quite a damper on it's international fame. I hope this one gets a great international release, both in cinema and on DVD. Great pieces of art should not be kept indoors.
I give it 10 out of 10. The best of 2006 and perfect in every way.
- Jul 18, 2007