Ignorant Fairies

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The third film from the Turkish-born director Ferzan Özpetek (Harem Suare) is his first based fully in Italy. Antonia (Buy), a Rome doctor, is aghast at the sudden death of her beloved husband Massimo - and the discovery that he had a male lover, market worker Michele (Accorsi). The bereaved pair move through phases of animosity, curiosity and attraction, and Antonia finds herself embraced by Michele's extended family - an outsiders' collective, loudly cutting through categories of class, culture and sexuality, and making for vivacious, engagingly shot ensemble scenes. With its sultry soundtrack, Ignorant Fairies is about irrevocable attachments as well as secret identities. The plot is perked up by several well-timed wry asides, not least from Antonia's helpful mother. At heart, the film is deeply sentimental, right through to its final frames, but thanks to classy performances, what might have lapsed into slush is transformed into something appealingly tender.

By: AHa

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