You may fancy a nap of your own during this overlong, mother-fixated memoir based on a popular Italian novel. In 1960s Turin, young Massimo (Nicolò Cabras) is heartbroken when his beloved mother passes away suddenly. From then on, her death colours everything: his struggles with his faith and with his father (Guido Caprino), and his relationships with his friends.
As he grows to manhood, Massimo (played as an adult by Valerio Mastandrea) finds the maternal spectre hanging over everything he does, particularly his relationship with a sparky young doctor (‘The Artist’ star Bérénice Bejo), who for some inexplicable reason is attracted to this perpetual misery-guts. Veteran director Marco Bellocchio is clearly more interested in the childhood sequences: these are warmly photographed and charmingly wistful. But the majority of the film is spent in the company of grown-up Marco, an empty shell of a leading man who flat-out refuses to cheer up.