Alessandro Piva’s much anticipated follow-up film, Mio Cognato (My Brother In Law) was a huge success, further emphasizing his talent and originality as one of Italy’s most talented directors. The film co-stars two of Italy’s most versatile actors, Sergio Rubino and Luigi Lo Cascio. The chemistry between the two of them is so strong, it’s as if you are watching actual brothers-in-law interacting with each other. They are a couple of average-Joes, a little down on their luck, followed by a trail of unfortunate coincidences and shady hoodlums. The combination of Piva’s unique style of shooting, articulate direction and clever screenwriting will make you sympathize with the characters’ hardships. Furthermore, Mio Cognato has one of those shocking, unexpected endings that make you want to see the film again in order to re-connect the dots that led to such a surprise. It is one roller coaster of a movie. You will laugh and you will cry.
Mio Cognato and La Capagira were both made in the seaside town of Bari, located in the southern region of Puglia. They document everyday life and in some cases, the difficulty of living in the south: a consistent theme with today’s new batch of Italian filmmakers. Piva’s films succeed in doing this with a sharp sense of humor carried by characters who are endearingly flawed and a bit overwhelmed with life and all of its responsibilities. The powerful simplicity of his films will make you fall in love with his Bari; his Bari because Piva shoots the scenes in and around Bari with a sentimental eye that pays homage to this city that hosted his adolescence, and in doing so has captured the strong affection he has for the Pugliese town.
His latest film, Milionari takes him to the streets of Naples to recount the life of one of the city's most notorious crime bosses. The film features a great cast of actors and is so far, getting great reviews from critics. The film will be in Italian theaters tomorrow.