|CARO DIARIO (DEAR DIARY)
(director/writer: Nanni Moretti; cinematographer:
Giuseppe Lanci; editor: Mirco Garrone; music:
Nicola Piovani; cast: Nanni Moretti (Himself),
Bozzolo (Actor in Italian Film),
Nardone (Actor in
Italian Film), Antonio Petrocelli (Actor
in Italian Film), Jennifer Beals (Herself), Renato
Carpentieri (Gerardo), Antonio Neiwiller (Mayor of
Stromboli), Moni Ovadia (Lucio),
Mario Schiano (Prince of Dermatologists), Conchita
Airoldi (Inhabitant of Panarea), Giulio
Base (Car Driver), Carlo
Mazzacurati (Film Critic); Runtime: 100; MPAA
Rating: NR; producers: Angelo Barbagallo/Nanni
Moretti/ Nella Banfi
; New Line Cinema; 1993-Italy-in Italian with
story that I found foreign to my taste."
by Dennis Schwartz
indie filmmaker Nanni Moretti ("Red
Lob"/"The Son's Room"/"We Have A Pope") writes and
directs this wry comedy about the modern Italian
lifestyle, with him playing himself in the quasi-autobiographical
film. It's all about him and includes a muddled
story that I found foreign to my taste. This is his
eight film but the first released in North America.
Some folks refer to Moretti as the "Italian
Woody Allen." The film is divided into three
chapters. Each chapter sets a different tone in the
star's diary. None of the chapters caught my fancy.
first chapter, "On My Vespa", has Moretti taking a
motor scooter trek around a sparsely crowded
summer-time Rome, where he checks out the cool
architecture. We take in the sights of the city and
hear his monologue on films and see clips of the
American film Henry: Portrait of a Serial
Killer (1990). After expressing his admiration
for the American actress Jennifer Beals, the star of
Flashdance (1983), he by accident meets her with indie
American director Alex Rockwell. Moretti also shows us
the spot where Pasolini was killed in 1975.
second chapter, "Islands", has
Moretti go to the Aeolian
Islands of Sicily accompanied by his
intellectual friend Gerardo (Renato
Carpentieri), who hasn't viewed television since the
1960s but on this trip becomes obsessed with it.
third chapter, "Doctors", chronicles
Moretti's countless visits to specialists to
uncover the cause of a mysterious skin irritation.
There are a number of times he's given a
wrong diagnosis and wrongly treated with
harmless creams, pills and acupuncture. Luckily
for him, he comes across a doctor who discovers he
has a treatable Lymphoma.
It's an innovative self-portrait where he mocks himself, shows frustration with life's travails and is moved by both tragedy and nostalgia. Though it has some parts that were interesting, his supposedly mind-blowing observations and the running monologue style of delivery wasn't sustained and I grew restless with all the dull spots.
REVIEWED ON 2/15/2015 GRADE: C+
Dennis Schwartz: "Ozus' World Movie Reviews"
© ALL RIGHTS RESERVED DENNIS SCHWARTZ