Bruno Bonomo is a film producer whose professional and personal lives are falling apart. Until he comes across a screenplay that takes prime minister and media tycoon Silvio Berlusconi, as its controversial subject.
A blend of political polemic, sly satire and soap-opera drama, Nanni Moretti’s story owes its failings to an overreaching ambition. Moretti employs a film-within-a-film narrative to take a swipe at former Italian premier Silvio Berlusconi. Much of the satirical subtlety is lost on those raised outside Italy’s borders, while almost all the politicising is thoroughly overblown. It is only when he steps off his soapbox that Moretti breathes life into his film, letting his leading man, Silvio Orlando, thrive as an ailing movie producer suffering a painful divorce.
The film’s political edge ensured it did big business in Moretti’s native land, but for us non-Latins it is difficult to see beyond Orlando’s human story.
The political satire in this bitty drama can be lost on those residing outside of Italy.