English Title: The Son’s Room
Original Title: La stanza del figlio
Language: Italian, Latin
Country: Italy, France
Director: Nanni Moretti
Music: Nicola Piovani
Cinematography: Giuseppe Lanci
Claudia Della Seta
I watched this film several years before on TV, but interrupted and left unfinished, this time finally completed it in the Febiofest’s special program of Nanni Moretti’s canon.
The general thoughts after watching it in the cinema is that this Cannes’ Palme d’Or winner is lagging behind its award-winning prestige, during the whole process, it is difficult to single out any extraordinariness from it, which baffles me so much. The narrative is rather mediocre, any anticipated set piece are orchestrated in a mannered template, leaves a mawkish and maudlin impression of ennui (Brian Ono’s BY THE RIVER is overtly pretentious here). The pain of losing one’s dearest is a torment could slowly erode one’s soul and drop in from time to time, which has nothing unexpectedly thrilling or soothing from the film’s exposition.
If Moretti could be ranked as the Italian equivalence of Woody Allen, I divine the chief enjoyment should spring from its script and dialogue, in this case it is just as barren and conventional like as other tacky family tearjerkers, in spite of a hotchpotch of various patients of the psychiatrist adds up some emotional bite while being not too sharp-wittedly different from other generic shrink cliches. Compared with QUIET CHAOS (2008), another bereavement drama starring Moretti under the helm of Antonello Grimaldi, THE SON’S ROOM is a torrent of tepid water, the warmth it heats up is not as unaffected as I had expected.
The whole cast did a good job but nothing attracts any special attention, while Laura Morante’s tearless grief of losing her only son is over-stagy, ironically Moretti is a much more natural actor by comparison, after all, the film does not deserve his overstated cachet, nor does Nanni Moretti.