Claudia Gerini

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Video - Joaquin Phoenix And Philip Seymour Hoffman Arrive At The Venice Film Festival 'The Master' Premiere


Arrivals for the premiere of 'The Master' at Italy's 69th Venice Film Festival included the film's stars Joaquin Phoenix, Philip Seymour Hoffman and Madisen Beaty. Valentina Cervi of 'True Blood' also arrived at the event along with Claudia Gerini ('The Passion of the Christ'), actress and director Nadine Labaki ('Caramel'), Isabella Ferrari ('Quiet Chaos'), and models Catrinel Marlon and Liliana Matthaus.

Valentina Cervi was one the photographers by the red carpet couldn't get enough of as she elegantly posed for photos in a floor length, sheer white gown with long sleeves and glittering collar whilst holding a pink-tipped rose she had been given

The Unknown Woman Review


Excellent
Most moviegoers know Giuseppe Tornatore as the director of that most kind-hearted of classics, Cinema Paradiso. Prepare yourself then for wading into The Unknown Woman, about as different a movie as could be made. You'll know it right from the beginning: The movie opens with sex and violence as women are trotted naked before a hidden man -- he's obviously selecting among them for some purpose -- before segueing to scenes of sweaty bondage, rape, and abuse.

Things abruptly change -- as we jump to the future, it turns out -- when we follow the aforementioned young and sweaty blond woman to a later point in her life. It's difficult to explain what happens in An Unknown Woman without giving away too much, but in a nutshell we follow the Ukranian Irena (a brilliant and brave Kseniya Rappoport) to Italy. She looks like hell but she's flush with cash. And for some reason she's obsessed with a well-off family who has a young daughter. Irena begins to insinuate into the family's life -- moving in across the street, getting a job as a maid in their building, and -- as things take an even more disturbing turn -- she knocks the family's housekeeper down the stairs, paralyzing her. Irena applies for the now-vacant job, and now she's in their home.

Continue reading: The Unknown Woman Review

Don't Move Review


Unbearable
In the pantheon of ludicrous, offensive, and idiotic dramatic ideas, few can rival the narrative axis of Sergio Castellitto's Don't Move, in which heart-stopping romance and chest-heaving passion spring from deliberate, violent rape. Preposterous whenever it's not embarrassingly mawkish and manipulative, this Italian import concerns Timoteo (Castellitto), an unhappily married surgeon, and the budding affair he begins with filthy, impoverished cocktail waitress Italia (Penélope Cruz) after he - believe it or not - repeatedly sexually assaults her over the course of a few weeks. Yet love blossoms from such brutality because, as Castellitto's film would somehow have us believe, Timoteo's crime - not exactly romanticized, but nonetheless presented with something less than condemnation - is just a cry for help, a cathartic expulsion of the anger and anguish created by his loveless life. Thus, when he physically forces himself upon the innocent Italia (her name simply one of many instances of unsubtle symbolism), he's not a cretinous predator to be loathed or vilified but, rather, a pitiful man trying to find himself.

Turned off yet? If not, then Castellitto's wealth of ostentatious slow-motion shots, employment of cheesy pop songs, and disgusting, exploitive use of a critically wounded young girl for his film's framing story, will undoubtedly do the trick. Adapted from Margaret Mazzantini's novel, Don't Move layers on cheap sentiment and shamelessly calculating plot twists without even a sidewise glance toward rationality. Timoteo's teenage daughter suffers serious head trauma in a motorcycle accident, and while waiting to hear word of her grave condition, Timoteo spies a mysterious figure on the hospital promenade who conjures memories of his beloved Italia, whom he not only loved and planned to run away with (wife and brand new baby be damned), but whom he credits for having healed his tortured soul. As embodied by Castellitto, Timoteo is the kind of misery-relishing sad-sack who enjoys prolonged, empty stares into nothingness, and his behavior is so ridiculous - including one screamingly silly moment when he writes "I Raped A Woman" in the sand while his wife ignorantly saunters by - that it's hard to envisage him as anything less than an absurdly overblown fictional creation. Watching him act forlornly in a dreary bar (in slow-motion, naturally) while Europe's "The Final Countdown" blares from the jukebox is to witness the eye-rolling height of bizarre unintentional comedy.

Continue reading: Don't Move Review

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