Tornatore's follow-up to Cinema Paradiso isn't quite so dewy-eyed, but will still have cynics retching into their popcorn. Amiable old buffer Matteo (Mastroianni) lives a lonely life in Sicily. On a whim, he ups sticks and travels to the mainland; his aim, to reunite his family round a dinner table. But his children seem strangely embarrassed by him. Contrasted with the highly unsatisfactory behaviour of his adult offspring are his vivid memories of them as kids. His son Alvaro remains absent, and as the old man camps miserably on the doorstep, young Alvaro (the terminally cute Cascio) shimmers into view. There is a melodramatic plot lurch, a haunting dream sequence, a well-handled autumnal love affair, and a neat twist at the end. Like Cinema Paradiso, it's expertly manipulative and good-looking, though a tad darker. Mastroianni gambols through it.
Cast and crew
|Screenwriter:||Tonino Guerra, Giuseppe Tornatore, Massimo De Rita|