I would be lying to you if I pretended I was an ardent fan of Bernardo Bertolucci, whose massive reputation seems (to my mind) to be inverse proportion to his talent. However, a film is a film is a film, so I approached this one with as open a mind as I could. Sadly, BB lived down to my worst expectations with a film so lacking in purpose and energy,that I cannot imagine why anyone bothered to finance it, let alone screen it.
Lorenzo is a tricky and troubled 14 year old, living with his single mum in Rome. He is – from her perspective and ours, as well – a pain in the arse. He is solitary, brooding, spotty and unwilling to engage in any of the normal processes of life. He lives inside his headphones, and is only willing to put himself out to visit his grandmother. He is supposed to be going on a skiing trip with his school, but keeps the money, doesn’t get on the hus, and chooses to spend the week in the basement of his mother’s apartment. Shortly afterwards a young woman appears, who turns out to be his older half sister, Olivia. It must be something in the genes (the dad, presumably) because she gives him a run for his money as being a complete waste of space – a spoiled junkie who behaves as if the world owes her a living.
And that’s it. Two obnoxious people in a basement room together for a week, and we get to be there with them. Nothing else happens. They don’t do or say anything interesting. They don’t go anywhere, meet any significant character, or develop in any fashion. I am at a loss to understand why anyone thought there was a film there, just as I am baffled as to why BB keeps making films about young people, when he clearly has no grasp of what makes them tick.
That’s about all I have to say. It’s a nothing film, and I would suggest that you pay nothing to go and see it.
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