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Out of Bounds (2007)

Fuori dalle corde (original title)
| Drama | June 2008 (USA)
The story of Mike, a young Italian boxer from Trieste. A troubled man, like many of his peers; thirty years old and still a dreamer. Mike's dream, shared by his sister Anna, is to become a ... See full summary »


Fulvio Bernasconi
2 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »




Credited cast:
Michele Venitucci ... Mike
Maya Sansa ... Anna
Juan Pablo Ogalde ... Ramirez
Vili Matula Vili Matula ... Goran
Claudio Misculin Claudio Misculin ... Guido
Mauro Serio Mauro Serio ... Bargni (as Nicola Mauro Serio)
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Wanja Götz ... Cage Fighter
Ralf Haeger ... Box Pro (as Ralf Häger)
René Spitzer René Spitzer ... Car Fighter


The story of Mike, a young Italian boxer from Trieste. A troubled man, like many of his peers; thirty years old and still a dreamer. Mike's dream, shared by his sister Anna, is to become a champ in the near future. But, as often happens real life is harsh, bitter, and full of hidden dangers. Mike falls for the allure of these dangers. He starts earning a lot in illegal fistfights, but soon discovers that it's not a world he likes. And getting out will be harder than he ever imagined. Written by Swiss Films

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User Reviews

The strong images aren't enough to compensate the hollow screenplay
6 November 2007 | by MaxBorg89See all my reviews

A couple of days after this film's official screening at the Locarno Film Festival, I had the opportunity to meet the director, Fulvio Bernasconi, who revealed it took him and the two co-writers four years to come up with a satisfying draft of the script, adding that usually, if it takes that long, perhaps you shouldn't make the movie. I f only he had followed his own advice: as visually skilled as he may be, he hasn't crafted a solid enough dramatic foundation to make the powerful imagery emotionally relevant, thus reducing Italian/Swiss co-production Fuori Dalle Corde a boldly executed but profoundly flawed directorial debut.

Set in Trieste, a town in North-Eastern Italy, the film recounts the unsuccessful attempts of a young man named Mike (Michele Venitucci) to become famous as a prize fighter: after losing one match too many, he is forced, once again, to depend on his sister Anna, who barely makes enough money for herself but keeps supporting her sibling's ambitions regardless. The situation seems to improve when a manager from the Balkans offers Mike a series of well-paid gigs abroad. The catch? All those fights are illegal, and soon enough Mike's entire life comes close to falling apart, as both Anna and the few friends he had left turn their backs on him.

The story itself isn't that bad, and it would have made one hell of a movie, hadn't Bernasconi filled the script with clichés: why is it that the bad guys always have to be German, Croatian or Russian? Why do the fights always take place in the same locations, such as warehouses (a clear nod to Fight Club, especially in terms of cinematography, editing and brutality) and swimming pools (speaking of which: since when does the pool's owner run away and leave it to the winner of the match to get rid of the dead opponent?)? And why does the brother-sister relationship have to be on the brink of incest? That is actually the weakest aspect of the film: originally, Mike and Anna were meant to be lovers (and the first minutes of the movie are a bit ambiguous on the subject), until the director decided to make them siblings because "that kind of bond is much stronger"; on screen, said connection is never believable, with Venitucci's attempt at delivering a competent performance (which inexplicably won the Best Actor award in Locarno) undermined by Sansa's unusually insipid acting (is it really that long since she made The Best of Youth and Good Morning, Night?), leaving it to Juan Pablo Ogalde's half-demented but disillusioned boxer to provide some emotional punch (forgive the expression).

Overall, pretty disappointing: this could have been a raw, unflinching drama, instead of the flat, cold mess it is.


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