Thursday, 2 July 2015

A film review: "Nessuno si salva da solo" [2015, Italy]

Sergio Castellitto partners once again with his writer-wife Margaret Mazzantani to create an evocative portrait of modern marriage in his latest drama, "Nessuno si salva da solo" [Eng. Trans: You Can't Save Yourself Alone].

Jasmine Trinca and Riccardo Scamarcio in "Nessuno si salva da solo" [2015] Jasmine Trinca and Riccardo Scamarcio in "Nessuno si salva da solo" [2015]
Jasmine Trinca in "Nessuno si salva da solo" [2015] Jasmine Trinca, Riccardo Scamarcio, Angela Molina, and Roberto Vecchioni in "Nessuno si salva da solo" [2015]
Jasmine Trinca and Riccardo Scamarcio in "Nessuno si salva da solo" [2015]

Estranged couple Gaetano (Ricardo Scamarcio) and Delia (Jasmine Trinca) meet up at a restaurant to decide how to share the children's summer holidays. Their 'civil' exchange of pleasantries nevertheless barely conceal mutual resentment and anger, borne through frustration and the obvious love they still feel for each other.

What starts off as a potential mud-slinging match is quickly diverted thanks to their random trips down memory lane, and the mostly good things that they shared between them over the years. We see them when they first met, at a clinic where Delia, a nutritionist, diagnoses Gaetano. She's taken aback by the gumption with which he asks her for a kiss straight after just making fun of her teeth. "Of course, you cannot", she says, but before long they find themselves making passionate love after closing time.

So begins Delia and Gaetano's stormy odyssey through love, marriage, parenthood, heartbreak, and break-up. Their twelve year journey, shown through a series of montages, is as much about their individual failings as a sign of the self-centred society that they live in, inspired by fashionable cliché and convention.

Watching their animated exchanges a few tables away are a smooching elderly couple (Roberto Vechhioni and the inimitable Ángela Molina). Later, they briefly join Delia and Gaetano for a stroll down the streets of Rome recounting their own affair, with the hope of witnessing a miracle that evening...

Miracles don't always happen, but the film's beautifully shot closing sequence will nevertheless linger in your memory long after the end credits start rolling. Make no mistake - this is as mainstream a film as you can expect, but it is made special, thanks to the organic character development and an intelligently original script. Castellitto creates his own magic in the way he brings out the explosive chemistry between his protagonists that even a cynic would find it hard not to root for the couple to get back together. The actors - both Riccardo Scamarcio and the talented and beautiful Jasmine Trinca, shine in the hands of this able director who has a keen eye for blocking and timing his scenes. The soundtrack complements the film's message and tone, and the other technical aspects are clean and professional. This sentimental but amiable film will be ideal for couples to enjoy, and is Recommended Viewing..! DVD Link [PAL] | G-Translated English Subtitles


The Nudity: Jasmine Trinca, Ricardo Scamarcio, and Marina Rocco
Ms. Trinca appears either nude or bottomless in at least four scenes. Some happen to be passionate lovemaking scenes alongside Ricardo Scamarcio. There's also a scene where Gaetono interrupts Delia while breastfeeding and demands a bit of 'bitti' for himself. :-) Marina Rocco, as Gaetano's lover, appears partially nude in a couple of scenes.

Jasmne Trinca, Riccardo Scamarcio, and Marina Rocco nude in scenes from "Nessuno si salva da solo" [2015, Italy].


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