Panorama | Contemporary World Cinema
This story of love and anger comes from one of Italy’s greatest living directors. Gianni Amelio’s film is scaled down to an intimate level, taking on public issues but using them as the backdrop to a story of two families and the dysfunction within them. Venerable star Renato Carpentieri plays Lorenzo, an elderly lawyer of dubious ethics. Alienated from his children, he finds himself drawn to some new neighbours. Michela (Micaela Ramazzotti) and her husband Fabio (Elio Germani) head a family that appears happier and more unified than Loreznzo’s own, but as he gets close to them a different picture emerges…
The movie is set in Naples, a city rich in heritage but facing new challenges. Tribute to the storied locale is paid by ace cinematographer Luca Bigazzi and composer Franco Piersanti: the fading splendour of the city is made rich for our eyes, and the score complements this sad beauty. Amelio has made a film that pleases the senses as much as it stirs the soul.
"Amelio is aiming right for our hearts… [He] has felt the call of an emotion, the ‘tenderness’ of the film’s title, that has the power to bludgeon through misunderstandings, hardships and stubborn wills like a bulldozer through a wall."—Camillo De Marco, Cineuropa