After a serious back operation, legendary Italian director Bernardo Bertolucci went missing from film for a decade. Now he’s back, directing from his wheelchair. A triumphant comeback? Not quite. ‘Me and You’ is eco-lightbulb-warm next to ‘Last Tango in Paris’. And his navel-gazing deep-and-meaningfulness may cause you to cringe. But, for a 73-year-old, Bertolucci shows a refreshing lack of cynicism in making a film about the chaos of being young.
Fourteen-year-old Lorenzo (Jacopo Olmo Antinori) looks like he was raised by wolves – freakishly low hairline, mumbly, could benefit from Clearasil. He should be skiing but is hiding in the basement of his Rome apartment block. When his 25-year-old half-sister (Tea Falco) tags along, Lorenzo is fuming. She’s an addict going cold turkey and the two barely know each other. But over a week, they fight and flirt (if you’ve seen ‘The Dreamers’, you’ll know that having parents in common won’t stop young lovers in a Bertolucci movie). Slowly, ‘Me and You’ becomes ‘me and you against the world’. This is too slight to mark Bertolucci’s return as a major contender, but there are some lovely, tender moments.