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Marra, P. (2006). Ricordati di me [Remember Me, My Love] directed by Gabrielle Muccino Roadside Attractions, 2004; 124 minutes. Fort Da, 12(1):107-116.
(2006). Fort Da, 12(1):107-116
Ricordati di me [Remember Me, My Love] directed by Gabrielle Muccino Roadside Attractions, 2004; 124 minutes
Reviewed by Patricia Marra, MFT
The Cinema of Absolute Proximity
To describe a couple is to write an autobiography. Because we begin our lives in a couple, and are born of a couple, when we talk about couples we are telling the stories of our lives. We may try and make the couple as abstract as possible because they are so close to home. Or rather because they are home; because once there was nowhere else to live.
Adam Phillips, Monogamy, p. 24
A while ago, in an interview with Terry Gross (2004) on NPR's Fresh Air, British film director Mike Leigh explained how his films are driven by character — not just as a key element of the story but as the prime shaper of the story. He illustrated this by describing his filmmaking technique: At the start and in each ensuing scene, he tells the actors separately how much their characters would know at that point in the story line, and then he brings them together to feed the script with their improvised lines until the dialogue works. Like Bion, Leigh keeps things alive by not knowing too much from moment to moment.
Character, in Leigh's sense, seems to be something substantial: a creative, active force that can shape plots and people's lives. But what drives Gabriele Muccino's latest movie, Ricordati di me [English title: Remember Me, My Love], is another type of character — in fact, what appears to be a lack of character, or center, in each of the four Ristuccia family members, leaving instead a metastasizing inner restlessness that sets a hysterical, frantic pace to the film. Colliding and ricocheting off each other, these characters are driven relentlessly by their own panicked emptiness, and Muccino pulls us in for a close up to watch this nuclear family explode.
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