Sunday, October 19, 2008

London Film Festival Day 5 - QUIET CHAOS / CAOS CALMA

QUIET CHAOS is a well told, moving drama about mourning. It wreaks of quality and yet doesn't quite have that extra something that catapults it into greatness. Alessandro Gasssman directs Nanni Moretti in a role as a successful businessman whose wife dies in a tragic accident while he is at the beach, saving the life of a drowning Isabella Ferrari. Once back in the city he slips into a quiet mourning. No outward histrionics - his grief manifests itself in the decision to sit outside his daughter's prep school every day - nodding hello to the locals, reading the paper and occasionally holding court to his work colleagues who are being riven by office politics. The movie has attracted attention because of a controversial sex scene with between Moretti and Ferrari but frankly, it's tame stuff considering what you see in modern cinema these days, and should be compared to the sex scenes in MONSTER'S BALL - perfectly merited in the given context. The problem is that all that brouhaha and the all-star Italian cast has attracted more attention than this movie actually warrants. Yes, it's all very well done, but it lacks the innovation or slipperiness of a movie like Egoyan's ADORATION also showing in the festival.

QUIET CHAOS / CAOS CALMA played Berlin and London 2008 and opened earlier this year in Italy, Spain, Israel and the Netherlands. It opens next week in the UK and on December 3rd in Belgium and France. It opens on January 29th in Germany.

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