Monday, 18 January 2010

Mid-August Lunch - DVD - 18/1/10

Gentle, charming, quaint, delicate, warm, beautiful and honest.

In the same week as the "industry" awarded the excesses of James Camerons empty "Avatar" some of it's highest honours I stumbled upon this gem of a movie.

Gianni Di Gregorio is best known as the man who provided the screenplay for the ultimate gangster movie "Gomorrah" in which he presented us with the awful, violent and ugly truth of the life of a gangster in modern Naples. Here though he presents a world so far removed from that as to be almost alien.

As well as directing Di Gregorio stars as Gianni who lives at home with his mother. With the pressures of being unable to meet the financial demands of their condominium living begin to bite they are offered a way out as the administrator tells Gianni he will wave much of what is owed if he will look after his mother for the night while he takes a break with his wife. Gianni and his mother reluctantly agree and are then given a surprise when the administrator turns up with his mother Marina and his aunt Maria.

While the two new additions to his life settle in Gianni receives a request from his friend, the local doctor, to look after his mother, Grazia, while he works the night-shift at the hospital. A sense of loyalty to his friend sees him agree. So now Gianni has 24 hours with 4 elderly women to negotiate...which turns out to be a lot more difficult than anyone could have imagined.

This is a film that finds joy and beauty in the most unlikely of circumstances and shows that big budgets, fancy special effects and a "name" will never be a match for a simple story told with love and care by a director who understands the importance of honesty.


  1. Another film that touched me, it resonated with the close family ethos I grew up with.
    my own mother always made it clear that there was "room at the Inn".space may have been limited, but not hospitality. In my childhood I awoke many a time and had to stumble over the sleeping bodies of cousins and other family who'd visited that weekend.
    This film epitomised a mantra my grandmother used..."The doors never shut and the kettle is aye on".
    Loved it.

  2. I'm with you on this one.

    I was really moved by it.

    I was also really attracted by the lifestyle...slow, relaxed and gentle.