We know the Italian’s do film well and it’s always a delight to have the highlights of their past cinematic year appear on the screens of our very own Palace Nova Cinemas (both East End and Prospect) for the Lavazza Italian Film Festival.
This year’s films range through family comedy/dramas with an earful of loud and dramatic yelling (There's No Place Like Home, My Big Gay Italian Wedding) and wanderlust romances set in the most beautiful parts of Italy (Blessed Madness, Where I've Never Lived, Naples in Veils), as well as the darker tales of crime, corruption and murder in the country’s terrifyingly brutal underbelly (Loro, Dogman, The Girl in the Fog, The Last Prosecco). There's also always room for some some Italian classics (Suspiria, A Fistful of Dollars) alongside a special focus on Turkish-Italian director and screenwriter, Ferzan Ozpetek (Facing Windows, Ignorant Fairies, Loose Canons).
Italian crime/thriller, Boys Cry (La Terra Dell’Abbastanza), gave the excited audience a preview of what Italian creativity we have to look forward to, and it did not disappoint. Winner of the Best First Film at the 2018 Nastri d’Argento Awards, this intense crime/thriller follows the dysfunctional lives of feisty teen males and pizza delivery boys, Mirko and Manolo, who are looking for a way out of their low-income lives in the rundown outskirts of Rome. After unintentionally hitting and killing a hiding gang member while driving the streets of Rome, their world is turned upside-down as Manolo’s opportunistic father pulls them into the world of mobs, money and murder, with their accident played off as a purposeful killing for the Mafia.
As the teens become further involved in the terrifyingly violent, yet extremely high-paying mob world their personal lives begin to suffer, especially that of Mirko. Despite having money Mirko’s inflamed ego and violent lifestyle destroys his relationship with his girlfriend, Ambra, and alienates him from his mother leaving him only with his mob family. As Mirko’s life begins to truly spiral out of control he realizes that he needs to atone for his actions, but is it too late?
Writers, Directors and brothers, Damiano and Fabio D’Innocenzo (in their feature film debut), beautifully capture the cycle of poverty leading to crime in Rome’s underworld, ensnaring individuals in a world of violence and shifting allegiances that they’re often not cut-out to handle. As the movie demonstrates, moral certainty isn’t necessarily acquired with wealth and power and the film’s protagonists learn this the hard way.
This year’s Lavazza Italian Film Festival looks like it’s set out to be one full of passion, love, thrills and a whole gammit of bold Italian characters, with Boys Cry leading the way.
Boys Cry will screen again on multiple dates at both the East End and Prospect Cinemas for the 2018 Lavazza Italian Film Festival that runs from the 19th of September til the 14th of October, exclusively at the Palace Nova Cinemas.
Image via Lavazza Italian Film Festival