Benvenuto Presidente Review

Posted 9 years ago by myetvmedia

The Italian Contemporary Festival (ICFF) kicks off with “Welcome president!” a comedy directed by Riccardo Milani. It is the first of two big-screen divertissement of political argument being released at the ICFF as a North American Premiere. The second one being “Viva l’Italia” by Massimiliano Bruno. These two satires and social criticism tells us a lot about the health of the Italian political system with its corruption, nepotism, and sarcastic politicians. Many European countries are in similar situations, but only Italians have the guts to screen it and have a good laugh about it.

Can an ordinary man become President of the Italian Republic? Technically yes, if you are Italian, over 50 and have a clean record. Librarian and part time fisherman Giuseppe Garibaldi (Claudio Bisio) better known as Peppino in his quiet mountain village, learns that he just been elected President of the Italian Republic and he finds himself catapulted into the corridors of power. Obviously Peppino is not ready for it but his common sense and his personal nature allows him to become an effective leader. He works alongside (rub your eyes) Janis Clementi (Kasia Smutniak) who is the inflexible, fascinating and beautiful Deputy Secretary General of the Presidency. She tries in vain to show the new President the ropes. The relationship between the two leads to many funny moments.

The film is well constructed; the moments of pure fun are palpable and keeps the pace quite lively. Kasia and Claudio’s performance are commendable and supported by a strong cast, including: Giuseppe Fiorello, Remo Girone, Omero Antonutti, Massimo Popolizio, Gianni Cavina and Stefania Sandrelli.

Political satire is sometimes effective in producing laughter and jokes with its naïve figure. The comedy of Milani works especially well with Claudio Bisio at the rim. You will enjoy this film.

Christophe Chanel

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