Title: Fratelli Unici (Only Siblings)

Director: Alessio Maria Federici

Starring: Raul Bova, Luca Argentero, Carolina Crescentini, Miriam Leone.

A couple of siblings, that is two brothers who have always led the lives of only children, will reconcile happily ever after, through a series of mishaps in a rhythmical Italian comedy.

Director Alessio Maria Federici, accomplished in his home country for entertaining movies, delivers a bliss story through a majestic use of the camera and assemblage of the shots in the cutting room.

Pietro (Raoul Bova) is an established surgeon who lives in solitude, divorced from Giulia (Carolina Crescentini), and is an absent father of their only daughter Stella (Eleonora Gaggero). His brother Francesco (Luca Argentero) is a broke stuntman and womaniser who lives from day to day. When Pietro has a car accident and loses his memory, returning to a childlike state of mind, neither his brother nor his ex-wife – who is about to remarry with Gustavo (Sergio Assisi) – want to take care of him. Francesco will be persuaded to be his guardian once he discovers he may use his rich brother’s credit cards – although his beautiful and sensitive neighbour, Sofia (Miriam Leone), will trigger Francesco to do what is best for Pietro.

The story is predictable from beginning to end, every twist and angle does not surprise. Nevertheless the script by Luca Miniero and Elena Bucaccio is drenched with humour and wit. The steamy Raoul Bova plays subtly the coldhearted Pietro who after the accident becomes a mixture betwixt Forrest Gump and Chance the gardner, from ‘Being There.’ Whilst Luca Argentero interprets an adorable SOB (pardon the French), who naturally will evolve into a golden boy. Sergio Assisi is a little way over the top, but as comic relief of the plot he blends in fairly well. As for the ladies, the blonde and the redhead – besides being beautiful – are intense and believable in their interpretations. Perhaps the young girl playing Stella – Eleonora Gaggero – is a little stiff, and it will tickle you pink to hear she is the only one of the Roman family with an accent from Northern Italy.

This nicely paced comedy is a do-gooders modern fairytale, where characters in the end do the right thing through each of their coming-of-age stories. Family audiences will appreciate both the jokes and the message of kith and kin reconciliations.

Technical: A

Acting: B

Story: C+

Overall: B-

Written by: Chiara Spagnoli Gabardi


By Chiara Spagnoli Gabardi

Chiara Spagnoli Gabardi, is a film critic, culture and foreign affairs reporter, screenwriter, film-maker and visual artist. She studied in a British school in Milan, graduated in Political Sciences, got her Masters in screenwriting and film production and studied at the Lee Strasberg Theatre and Film Institute in New York and Los Angeles. Chiara’s “Material Puns” use wordplay to weld the title of the painting with the materials placed on canvas, through an ironic reinterpretation of Pop-Art, Dadaism and Ready Made. She exhibited her artwork in Milan, Rome, Venice, London, Oxford, Paris and Manhattan. Chiara works as a reporter for online, print, radio and television and also as a film festival PR/publicist. As a bi-lingual journalist (English and Italian), who is also fluent in French and Spanish, she is a member of the Foreign Press Association in New York, the Women Film Critics Circle in New York, the Italian Association of Journalists in Milan and the Federation of Film Critics of Europe and the Mediterranean. Chiara is also a Professor of Phenomenology of Contemporary Arts at IED University in Milan.

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