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Wednesday, December 29, 2010

[6.25/10] Loose Cannons a.k.a. Mine Vaganti (2010)

Loose Cannons


  Mine Vaganti (2010)

"Loose Cannons" or "Mine Vaganti", as it is called in Italy, unfolds around Tommaso has a comfortable life in Rome as an aspiring writer and a steady relationship with his boyfriend Marco - a life he has kept secret from his family. So when he's called back to his hometown of Lecce in Italy's deep south to help run the family pasta business, he decides to finally reveal his homosexuality to his conservative family and hopefully get out of his business obligations in the process. But when his plans are thwarted by his brother, Tommaso gets stuck on the path that he was desperately trying to avoid. Although this film may seem a bit dated for some, due to its tired subject matter, "Mine Vaganti" is a smart, uplifting and thoroughly hilarious social gay-themed comedy, that never takes itself too seriously, but at the same time never fails to engage the viewer with its fascinating visuals, likable characters and humorous script. The Turkish-born Italian director Ferman Ozpetek may not be as creative and original filmmaker as his German fella, Fatih Akin, but he certainly knows how to tells a good story, and to create a believable, yet engaging characters with an enviable affection. You won't get bored for a second, as "Mine Vaganti" is full of funny situations, witty dialogues, and unexpected twists. Moreover, the film features some truly great performances. The handsome Riccardo Scamarcio is truly sympathetic as the main protagonist, Tommaso, and he portrays a gay man quite confidently and credibly, without being over-the-top. Ilaria Occhini delivers the best performance as Tommaso's grandmother, a strong and powerful, yet sensible, sober-minded and good-looking old lady, that steals the show every time she appears on screen. The stunningly beautiful Nicole Grimaudo is almost as good as the paranoid and sensitive Alba, and the sassy gay friends of Tommaso, deliver most of the laughs, though they become a bit annoying at some point. Alessandro Preziosi also gives an above average performance as Antonio, who is, ironically, gay like his brother. Visually, "Mine Vaganti" also impresses, as the scenery of the Southern Italian countryside is typically gorgeous, as is the family's lavish mansion, and the color-saturated cinematography is beautifully preserved. Though "Mine Vaganti" is pretty old-fashioned and quite ordinary, director Ferman Ozpetek succeeds in blending all the right ingredients to create a bitter-sweet dramedy, that is as entertaining, touching, and enjoyable, as it's visually-captivating.


Unknown said...

I will definitely have to put this on my Netflix queue. Haven't watched an Italian film in a while.

George Beremov [Nebular] said...

Melissa, I think you'll love this one. If you want to watch a GREAT Italian movie, check out "I'm not Scared". ;)

Have you been to Italy? I've been there, and it's absolutely amazing!

Unknown said...

Have not been to Italy I'm afraid. I'm dying to go, though. I used to work in a travel store and helped people plan their Italy trips. I'll check out "I'm Not Scared." Thanks!