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Matteo Scuro is a retired Sicilian bureaucrat (responsible mainly for the writing of birth certificates) and a father of five children, all of whom live on the mainland and hold responsible... See full summary »
The small island where Ed had his house is located in Italy on the marvellous lake of Orta, close to the small medieval town of Orta San Giulio, a very calm and quiet place. Instead in the movie, the island is called Borgoventoso that means "windy town". See more »
Watched 'Correspondence' for many reasons. The concept was intriguing and is hardly an outdated one. Ennio Morricone is one of cinema's best and most iconic composers, consider the likes of 'Cinema Paradiso', 'The Mission' and 'The Good, The Bad and the Ugly' particularly amazing. Do like some of Giuseppe Tornatore's other work, 'Cinema Paradiso' is a masterpiece. Also really like Olga Kurylenko and Jeremy Irons, am a fan of Irons actually.
Unfortunately, 'Correspondence' left me underwhelmed. It is not as bad as the critics made out from personal opinion (though do share most of their problems with it), but it is a case of a good concept but mixed bag/average execution so can understand too the disappointment. Should have been much better considering the amount of talent and potential involved, with all having done much better work (all before and none since).
The two best things about 'Correspondence' are Kurylenko and Irons. Kurylenko is the one who has to carry the film and found her performance very committed and heartfelt as the one character 'Correspondence' tries to properly develop. Irons matches her sympathetically and brings his usual gravitas and that wonderfully distinctive voice to Ed. Despite being apart almost all the time, corresponding through texts, emails and video messages, the chemistry between the two is believable in that one can feel that they're in love and the big age gap between them is nowhere near as creepy to me than it sounds.
'Correspondence' is beautifully filmed and makes the most of the locations. All of which look great, stunning in the case of Italy. Morricone's score is nowhere near among his best work, but is suitably hypnotic and understated. There were moments in the script, everything with Ed's job was somewhat interesting and actually from personal view Ed's final speech was quite poignant. Much of it though is down to Irons' delivery of it, like the rest of the film's voice overs (which did not have anywhere near the same amount of impact) when it comes to acting not many actors delivered voice overs and narrations in the same way Irons did.
However, 'Correspondence' does have a lot of problems. A major problem is that the script is very limp and very rarely sounds natural. That is including most of the voice overs, which tend to ramble. Tornatore's direction is pretty uninspired, nowhere near close to amateurish but the pace especially needed to be tighter and somehow it didn't feel like Tornatore, other films of his had more emotional impact, were more sweeping and weren't as "safe". The supporting characters were very bland and stock, and in the acting department Kurylenko and Irons were the only ones that stood out (do not remember the other performances at all).
It's the story and pace that fare worst. The pace is a vast majority of the time, well almost the whole film, very pedestrian and never really comes to life. Am certain that it was intended to be deliberate, but the script and story (performances too) needed to compel to make that not be a weakness and 'Correspondence' failed on all three. The story started off quite well but will admit to having lost interest under halfway through when the mystery aspect of the film came in, then the film became dull and episodic. Then from just over halfway through, it became increasingly duller and more preposterous, some of it for me bordered on confusing too.
Summing up, liked the concept but the film was wanting in too many areas. 5/10
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