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PRODUCTION Italy

Giovanna Mezzogiorno’s low-budget “love”

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After the epic film Love in the Time of Cholera, and in anticipation of her turn in Marco Bellocchio’s Vincere (as Ida Dalser, the mother of Benito Mussolini’s secret son), Giovanna Mezzogiorno chose the low-budget L’amore non basta (“Love is not Enough”) for her return to Italian cinema.

“Depicting normality without resorting to stereotypes is very difficult,” said the Roman actress of Stefano Chiantini’s third feature film. (The second, Una piccola storia, is still awaiting distribution, after having screened in competition at the latest Bergamo Film Meeting). In the film she plays a flight attendant struggling to juggle work, university and even violin lessons – and above all a boyfriend, an aspiring writers with problems, to put it mildly.

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“Giovanna is a legend, I didn’t think she would accept,” admitted the director, who thanked Rocco Papaleo (who stars in and co-wrote the film) for having involved his friend and colleague: with a star in cast, it was much easier to find investors for the project.

They are flanked by two Chiantini “regulars”, Alessandro Tiberi and Ivan Franek, along with Alessandro Haber, on whom Papaleo heaped nothing but compliments, saying, “n a close-up he depicts an entire universe that no other actor could”.

Despite starting off like a romantic comedy, for Mezzogiorno (who might be going to Cannes with Wim Wenders’ The Palermo Shooting) L’amore non basta “is different from this year’s conventionally romantic films, which is why I decided to do it. I really loved the screenplay, it doesn’t impose any one point of view”.

Chiantini agrees: “I don’t like offering interpretations, I prefer describing suspended stories, like the kind I see around me”. Stories that “get lost along the way”, to use the words by Italo Calvino that close the film.

Produced by Liupo Film, L’amore non basta is being released on April 18 by Mediafilm on 80-100 screens.

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(Translated from Italian)

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