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Caterina in the Big City (2003)

Cast: Alice Teghil, Alice Teghil, Zach Wallen, more...
Director: Paolo Virz, Paolo Virz
    see all cast/crew...
Studio: Empire Pictures
Genre: Foreign, Italy
Running Time: 106 min.
Languages: Italian
Subtitles: English
    see additional details...

Synopsis
Writer/director Paolo Virz and co-writer Francesco Bruni follow up their sly fish-out-of-water comedy My Name Is Tanino with another comedy in a similar vein, Caterina in the Big City. Giancarlo (Sergio Castellitto) is delighted when he has an opportunity to leave his provincial teaching job and drag his wife Agata (Margherita Buy) and 12-year old daughter Caterina (newcomer Alice Teghil) back to his old neighborhood in Rome. Caterina is a sweet, nave, and pretty girl, and on her first day of school, she finds herself mocked as a hick. Her classmates are the sons and daughters of Rome's elite. Margherita's (Carolina Iaquaniello) parents are prominent intellectuals, and she leads a faction of bohemian socialist kids, while Daniella's father is a political heavyweight, and her preppy clique dresses in designer duds and espouses right-wing politics. Poor Caterina finds the two opposing factions battling over her allegiance, but every time she makes a new friend, her father fouls things up. Giancarlo, who is also an aspiring novelist, spends his evenings at home ranting about the elites and their devious, cliquish ways, but every time he's in the presence of an important person, he desperately tries to ingratiate himself and get his talents noticed. Meanwhile, he's drifting into depression and isolating himself from his wife and daughter. Caterina in the Big City was shown at New York City's Walter Reade Theater in 2004 as part of a Sergio Castellitto retrospective presented by the Film Society of Lincoln Center. ~ Josh Ralske, All Movie Guide

GreenCine Member Reviews

Country Mouse Blooms, Dad Devolves by talltale December 26, 2005 - 3:07 PM PST
12345678910
7 out of 8 members found this review helpful
Sergio Castellitto is a marvelous actor ("Mostly Martha," "Va Savoir," "Don't Move") and in CATERINA IN THE BIG CITY he has a scrumptious role, one that most good actors would die for. He does it full justice, too--playing the increasingly deranged dad of a sweet, unaffected high school student whose family moves to Rome from their much smaller town. There, all kinds of changes take place--first in the girl's school situation, later with her mom and dad. The movie effortlessly melds sociology, economics, politics, education, the media, kids, love, sex and the whole shebang. When it's over, you'll feel you've experienced life in ways that most American films don't come near.

At an early NYC Screening I attended, I finished the film so taken with the writing and direction that I hung around in order to talk to the filmmakers. I told them I found myself agreeing with much that the Castellitto character says, yet growing to dislike him intensely. Evidently, Italian audiences felt the character was absolutely right about politics and the media, but that his inability at parenting (and husbanding) turns him into a villain of sorts. See what you think. But see it. Castellitto has a fascinating role, and this is one hell of a good movie.




GreenCine Member Rating
12345678910

(Average 6.83)
41 Votes
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