Actor Valerio Mastrandrea is the male lead in two narrative features dealing with the current economic crises in Italy. In Garibaldi’s Lovers directed by Silvio Soldini (Italy/Switzerland) 2012 he plays a widowed plumber raising two children as best he can.
Other characters include a small cross section of society: an artist, secretaries, an immigrant worker, an eccentric small-time capitalist, and a high-power attorney. More unusual additions to the cast are several statues, scattered throughout the imaginary Italian city, that periodically comment on the sad state of affairs in the country.
In Balancing Act directed by Ivano De Matteo (Italy) 2012 Mastrandrea portrays a married civil servant who moves out of the apartment he shared with his wife and two children after his brief affair with another woman. Despite his efforts to maintain support of the family he leaves, and his own pursuit of a meager lifestyle, he slips increasingly downward into deep despair.
The fall season 2013 New Italian Cinema Events (NICE) at the Landmark’s Clay Theatre in San Francisco concludes this weekend. For more information see the San Francisco Film Society.
copyright © 2013 by N. A. Diaman, all rights reserved