Carlo Verdone is a Roman director, writer and actor who has made Italy laugh for over three decades and he’s never stopped doing it his way.
In movies like I’m Crazy About Iris Blond (1996 – you can find this one here in the US) he has always portrayed his version of the modern Italian man – loveable but a little neurotic and chronically feeling a little screwed. His new movie, Posti in Piedi in Paradiso opens tomorrow and it looks like he’s brought the frustration with modern life to a whole new level and it will be interesting to see if Italy is comfortable with Verdone’s dismal outlook.
Posti in Piedi in Paradiso (I would translate this: Standing Room Only in Heaven, but that’s just a guess) is about three divorced guys, played by Verdone, Pierfrancesco Favino ( Come Undone), and Marco Giallini who, because of money problems, have to share an apartment. Here, Verdone isn’t the only one in the picture that is feeling screwed – he’s making it a national thing, showing how, as he sees it, economic crisis, “the decline of taste”, the fracturing of the family, and the difficulty for the working class to overcome the class system in Italy make a grim future for the country.
As one reviewer put it: Is it a comedy or is it a tragedy? And is there hope for Verdone’s Italia? Let’s give this a few days and see what Italian moviegoers have to say about it.