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Negri returns with Heartache


Emotional instability among 30-somethings lies at the heart of Anna Negri’s second feature film, Good Morning Heartache (Riprendimi), in competition at this year’s Sundance Film Festival, where according to industry rumours Brad Pitt became interested in producing its remake.

Lucia and Giovanni are married: he’s an actor, she’s a film editor, they have a baby boy and are seemingly happy. We meet them just moments before their unexpected break-up, through the indiscrete eye of two filmmakers shooting a documentary on the (professional) instability of show business workers.

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“This is also a film about voyeurism,” said the director, who co-wrote the script with Giovanna Mori and admitted to being inspired by Michael Powell’s Peeping Tom.

The mockumentary structure (complete with closing captions on the fake documentary’s festival success) is for Negri “the comic device that offsets the melodrama. Ultimately, it is a metaphor for people’s sense of alienation when they’re dumped by their partner and feel like they’re living in a film”.

Shot in digital on a €700,000 budget, Heartache was produced (with the collaboration of Medusa Film and Sky) by Francesca Neri (Bess Film), who invested the ministerial monies won for her earlier Melissa P. and gave the director full creative freedom and autonomy in choosing the cast.

The actors’ spontaneity is the result of a long rehearsal period that – along with Negri’s quick tempos of recent years, spent working on television series and films – allowed for an unusually short shoot. The two leads are becoming increasingly bigger stars in Italy: Alba Rohrwacher, nominated for a David di Donatello for Silvio Soldini’s Days and Clouds [+see also:
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, and Marco Foschi, recently seen in Peter Del Monte’s Nelle tue mani.

A female-oriented film (from editor Ilaria Fraioli to the song by Gianna Nannini that rolls over the end credits), Heartache is being released by Medusa on 80 screens on April 11.

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(Translated from Italian)

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