Sunday, January 02, 2011

Io sono l'amore / I Am Love

Rakkautta italialaisittain / Kärlek på italienska. IT © 2009 First Sun etc. EX: Christopher Granier-Deferre. P: Luca Guadagnino, Francesco Melzi d'Eril, Marco Morabito, Tilda Swinton, Alessandro Usai, Massimiliano Violante. D: Luca Guadagnino. SC: Luca Guadagnino, Barbara Alberti, Ivan Cotroneo, Walter Fasano - from a story by Luca Guadagnino. DP: Yorick Le Saux - color - 1,85:1 - shot on 35 mm - lab: Technicolor S.p.a. PD: Francesca Balestra Di Mottola. Cost: Antonella Cannarozzi. Makeup: Paola Crostofaroni. Hair: Manolo García. M: John Adams. S: Francesco Liotard. ED: Walter Fasano. CAST: Tilda Swinton (Emma Recchi), Flavio Parenti (Edoardo Recchi, Jr.), Edoardo Gabbriellini (Antonio Biscaglia), Alba Rohrwacher (Elisabetta "Betta" Recchi), Pippo Delbono (Tancredi Recchi), Diane Fleri (Eva Ugolini), Maria Paiato (Ida Roselli), Marisa Berenson (Allegra Recchi), Waris Ahluwalia (Shai Kubelkian), Gabriele Ferzetti (Edoardo Recchi, Sr.). Original in Italian, Russian, and English. 120 min. Released in Finland by Scanbox with Finnish / Swedish subtitles by Tarja Sahlsten / Nina Ekholm. Viewed at Kino Engel 1, Helsinki, 2 Jan 2011

Luca Guadagnino's strong contemporary film is boldly Viscontian in its inspiration thematically and visually. A study of modern Italian bourgeoisie, it tells about a family business facing a turning-point. When the 80-year old patriarch (Gabriele Ferzetti, remembered from L'avventura, having also played Puccini and Casanova) dies, the family enterprise will become a part of multinational business, facing globalization, and that might be the end of the family, as well. The patriarch's son Tancredi (Pippo Delbono) will guide the business to the global waters.

Emma Recchi (Tilda Swinton) is Tancredi's Russian-born wife and the mother of their three grown-up children. After all these years she is still a stranger in the family, and there is no passion in the life of the red-blooded Emma. The maid Ida (Maria Paiato) is her only confidante, the warmest and the most compassionate person in the story. When Emma meets her son's associate, the young cook Antonio (Edoardo Gabbriellini), nothing can stop them. In the story of the passion Guadagnino is inspired by D.H. Lawrence. His love scenes are a dithyramb to the nobility of sexual abandon. The nature imagery is inspired and original.

Watching the film I could imagine that the cinematography by Yorick Le Saux is beautiful, but the visual quality of the cinema experience was not perfect, and I don't know whether the fault was with the quality of the digital intermediate, the duplication process, this particular print, or the projection.

John Adams, the prominent contemporary composer, has created a strong score for the film.

I look forward to future films by Luca Guadagnino.

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