English Title: Do You See Me?
Original Title: Scusate se esisto!
Director: Riccardo Milani
Cinematography: Saverio Guarna
Federica de Cola
Director Riccardo Milani, works for a third time with his wife, Italian comedienne Paolo Cortellesi, pairs her with heartthrob Raoul Bova, in his latest comedy about an architect Serena Bruno (Cortellesi), who comes from a small village, but excels in her major and has spent most of her years abroad after getting her doctorate of architecture. One day, she is finally fed up with living all alone in a foreign land and decides to move back to Italy.
Started from the scratch, Serena finds a part-time job as a waitress in a restaurant opened by the attractive divorcé Francesco (Bova), the film enacts a shopworn but well-versed comic ploy of a misled romantic fantasy from Serena’s unilateral angle, until Francesco brings her to a gay club, she realises they can only be best friends. Then comes the next step where a cordial friendship is crystallising when the two help each other out, Francesco pretends to be a fictional male architect Bruno Serena, whom the sexist Dott. Ripamonti (Fantastichini) is willing to cooperate with for a big project actually is proposed by Serena for the poor residents, while Serena herself has to relegate as Bruno’s secretary. Meanwhile family predicament is always the main staple, Serena passes herself as Francesco’s living-in girlfriend when his ex-wife Maria (Rocca) leaves him as the caretaker of his 7-year-old estranged son, who has a tongue-in-cheek name Elton (Foti), and Francesco balks at whether or not he should come out to him.
On a whole, the movie is a wholesome crowd-pleaser can register both light-hearted laughter and reflexive pondering of its toned-down feminist stand, and all the cues and foreshadowing are formulaically fulfilled to attain a feel-good ventilation in the end, if a bit too forced. Cortellesi, pulls off effectively considering Serena is such a larger-than-life character and prone to be a flat-out nuisance if ever she over-stretches even a bit, instead, Cortellesi patiently smoothes over the exaggerated narration from the start and soon establishes an appealing equilibrium with Bova, who, although challenges the arousing homosexual role, but in comparison, is rather cutesy and not committed enough to convince viewers of his character’s attributes. Serena’s mother and auntie, Francesco’s boyfriend, all are allotted to their comic function with broad characterisations, only Lunetta Savino’s Michela, the chronic victim of a male chauvinist pig, manages to ferment a visceral frisson with her pitch-perfect vibe. And a more essential relief comes before the end credits, we realise Serena’s project is loosely based on a true story of a female architect breaks the glass ceiling and achieves something distinctive, but one sad thing is that it has still been considered as a novelty in our modern society, in a (supposedly) civilised country like Italy, why on earth a genial comedy ends up lowering my confidence of humanity?