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Tommaso is the youngest son of the Cantones, a large, traditional southern Italian family operating a pasta-making business since the 1960s. On a trip home from Rome, where he studies literature and lives with his boyfriend, Tommaso decides to tell his parents the truth about himself. But when he is finally ready to come out in front of the entire family, his older brother Antonio ruins his plans. Written by
Palm Springs Internation Film Festival
Interesting, but doesn't quite work on all levels.
Ferzan Ozpetek's new film centers around a young man, Tommaso, who wants to step out of the family pasta making business and be a writer, he also wants to tell his family he's gay. When at a dinner party his brother announces he's gay, the father has a heart attack and leaves Tommaso at a loss. He is left to pick up the pieces whilst trying to deal with his own hidden truth, the attraction to him of a female colleague and his father's homophobia.
The film has an array of characters, Tommaso's family, many of them also have hidden truths, some are revealed, some are not. Potentially this could lead to a intriguing film, but Loose Cannons struggle in many ways. Firstly the subject matter is played, for the most part, quite seriously. Yes, there is a funny side to the situation Tommaso finds himself him, but there is also a serious side, that his life as he wants it, is on hold again. But there are other serious overtones: his father's refusal to accept or understand his other son's sexuality, his grandmother dwells on her own past and lost opportunities and there is his colleague's longing for someone unattainable. There are some very touching, often moving moments in the film, as characters reveal aspects of their lives to some and withdraw from others. Yet part way in the film tries to lighten up with the introduction of Tommaso's gay friends. Unable to be openly gay they downplay their sexuality with some quite funny results, but it feels out of place. As Tommaso looks onto the life he and his friends could have, so we the viewer look on wondering whether we are watching a comedy or drama.
Ozpetek presents this world beautifully, the film is shot well and looks great, but so does everything to the point that it all seems too perfect. All the characters are beautiful, stylish and middle class, living well and only through the aunt do we see any imperfections, which seem to be done for laughs. The perfection of the characters seems highly unrealistic, although perhaps one could say that despite the perfection on the outside, they have many imperfections within.
The cast are all very good, the actress playing the grandmother, is marvelous and the film does present an interesting story. However, because it never seems to know where it's going and there is little in the way of conclusion to many elements this leads to, at times, a very frustrating film experience despite it's potential.
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