PRODS Riccardo Tozzi, Giovanni Stabilini, Marco Chimenz
SCR Marco Bellocchio, Veronica Raimo, Stefano Rulli
CAM Daniele Cipri
ED Francesco Calvelli
MUS Carlo Crivelli
PROD CO Cattleya / Rai Cinema / Babe Films
Isabelle Huppert and Toni Servillo (Il Divo) are superb in Italian master Marco Bellocchio’s characteristically eloquent work, a caustic political critique and keenly observed social drama that centres on the hot-button issue of euthanasia. Based on the real-life political firestorm that engulfed Italy in 2009 when Beppe Englaro decided to take his long-comatose daughter Eluana off life support, Bellocchio’s film uses a loosely overlapping multi-thread structure to indelibly trace the hypocrisies and contradictions still rampant in today’s Italy.
Huppert shines in the role of a famous actress, an icy and staunch Catholic whose devotion to her own comatose daughter comes at the expense of family and employees. In another thread, Servillo delivers a profoundly human performance as an honest politician struggling with his conscience over his party’s decision to bring in a law expressly written to prevent Eluana’s assisted death.
Bellocchio makes no bones about where his allegiances lie. He delivers a supremely intelligent and powerful indictment of his country’s right-wing politics and the continued influence of the Catholic Church. "Marco Bellocchio reaffirms the dignity of life in another film of sparkling intelligence… [He turns] a real-life Italian national drama into engrossing narrative for sophisticated audiences."—Deborah Young, Hollywood Reporter