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FILMS Italy

18 Years Later for another commedia all'Italiana

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Brothers Mirko and Genziano haven’t spoken for 18 years, not since the day their mother died in a car accident. Mirko took over the family garage, had a son with his wife Mirella and does his best to battle personal insecurities and financial problems. Genziano, allergic to emotions and a slave to finance (and his iPhone), is a broker in London.

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, they’re reunited by the death of their father, whose last wish is to have his ashes laid to rest next to his wife, in Calabria. The trip south – aboard the same convertible, vintage Morgan destroyed in the accident and repaired by their father – provides a chance for catharsis and confrontation that the brothers have put off for too long.

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A long time in the making (the first draft dates back 10 years), the directorial debut of actor Edoardo Leo (who plays Mirko, alongside co-screenwriter Marco Bonini, who plays Genziano) came about, he says “from a certain frustration. As actors, no one had ever offered this kind of film, so we decided to write it ourselves.”

A good idea, given the results. It is unusual in Italian cinema of late to see a debut director so skillful at casting – especially Gabriele Ferzetti, their maternal grandfather, in an unusually light role – and at ease with the various changes in tone. Adds Sabrina Impacciatore (Mirella), “[Leo] knows how to maintain a balance between the film’s two characters, and feel the temperature of every scene”, passing easily from drama to the picaresque, from guilt to humour.

“We tried to make something in the best tradition of the commedia all’Italiana, whose view of the world was both emotional and disenchanted”, says Bonini. And while the film has its problems (the mysterious hitchhiker they pick up is a bit too “metaphorical”), they are easy to forgive in such a sincere debut.

Produced by Guido, Nicola and Marco De Angelis for DAP Italy, in partnership with Rai Cinema, 18 Years Later will be distributed by Eagle Pictures on June 4 on approximately 40 screens.

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(Translated from Italian)

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