Have I mentioned how much I love Isabella Ragonese?
I watched her tonight in the 2011 Il Primo Incarico (the first assignment) and I always feel a little guilty telling you Americans about these movies that are not readily available here in the states. It’s like, ” Ohhhh, this is soooo good! Too bad you’ll never have it!”
But you can have it, along with many more wonderful Italian and European movies if you just break down and buy a cheap region free DVD player like I’ve been telling you to. But I digress.
As much as I love going to the movies in Italy, I’m really glad I watched Il Primo Incarico alone,in my pjs, on my couch, and with a bottle of wine. It’s been a long time since I’ve been so completely lost in and transfixed by a movie, and I barely moved a muscle for the 90 minute story.
Isabella Ragonese is lovely as Nena, the southern Italian girl in the 1950s who becomes a teacher and is assigned to a small rural school far away from her home in Puglia. In Italy, a teacher can request a transfer, but at least initially, must go wherever sent, and there, I imagine, as anywhere, the new guys get what nobody else wants. She seems anxious for a little adventure and anxious to be free of her mother, but sad to leave her boyfriend, the upper class pretty boy that she assumes she’ll marry.