Now With More Than 3600 Reviews! Go Nuts - Read 'Em All!!

WELCOME! Use the search engines on this site (or your own off-site engine of choice) to gain easy access to the complete MAKSQUIBS Archive; over 3600 posts and counting. (New posts added every day or so.)

You can check on all our titles by typing the Title, Director, Actor or 'Keyword' of your choice in the Search Engine of your choice (include the phrase MAKSQUIBS) or just use the BLOGGER Search Box at the top left corner of the page.

Feel free to place comments directly on any of the film posts and to test your film knowledge with the CONTESTS scattered here & there. (Hey! No Googling allowed. They're pretty easy.)

Send E-mails to . (Let us know if the TRANSLATE WIDGET works!) Or use the Profile Page or Comments link for contact.

Thanks for stopping by.

Saturday, April 27, 2013


Italian hyphenate Nanni Moretti (writer-director-actor-producer) has never quite had the Stateside breakthru he deserves, though THE SON’S ROOM/’01 came close, and this sketchy piece about a newly elected, doubt-ridden Pope did little to tip the scales. It starts well with lots of Vatican activity as red-robed Cardinals struggle to find the new Pope. There’s gentle, but pointed satire on the wall-to-wall media coverage and Moretti shows off a classicist’s film technique with beautifully designed & paced pomp as Vatican tradition unfurls with grand inevitability . . . and seamless editing. But then, new Pope Michel Piccoli throws a panic-attack, refuses to appear for the masses, and desperate Vatican administrators call in psychiatrist Moretti to handle his Holiness’s nervous breakdown. End of Act One. Quite a set-up. Only now, Moretti makes a wrong turn, one the film never recovers from. The Pope goes ‘walkabout’ in Rome trying to find himself (and it’s no ROMAN HOLIDAY/’53, alas), while back at the Vatican, unaware that the Pope is loose, everyone’s under a well-tended house arrest, killing time with cards & impromptu volleyball tournaments. No doubt, Moretti hoped to avoid the expected doctor/patient chats over religious, philosophical & cultural disputes; the sacred & profane boilerplate from an old DON CAMILLO ‘50s parable contrasting Catholicism vs. Communism. But his substitutions are no improvement as the Pope falls in with a theatrical troupe of Chekhov players and finds a new shrink who turns out to be Moretti’s wife (Margherite Buy). Maybe Moretti would be better off dropping a hyphenate or two.

WATCH THIS, NOT THAT:: Some of Moretti’s best work has never gotten Stateside video release. (Admittedly, his political films probably don't travel.) But keep an eye out for LA MESSA È FINITA (THE MASS IS OVER)/’85 which shows him at his considerable best.

CONTEST: Hiding in plain sight, this Write-Up contains a MAKSQUIBS first.  Name it to win a Write-Up of any NetFlix DVD.

No comments: