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The Son's Room
The Son's Room
Actors: Nanni Moretti, Laura Morante, Jasmine Trinca, Giuseppe Sanfelice, Sofia Vigliar
Director: Nanni Moretti
Genres: Indie & Art House, Drama
R     2002     1hr 39min

Declared Best Picture at the Cannes Film Festival, this universally touching film tells the unforgettable story of a man facing the greatest challenge of his life. Giovanni is a psychoanalyst who thought he had all the ans...  more »


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Movie Details

Actors: Nanni Moretti, Laura Morante, Jasmine Trinca, Giuseppe Sanfelice, Sofia Vigliar
Director: Nanni Moretti
Genres: Indie & Art House, Drama
Sub-Genres: Indie & Art House, Love & Romance, Family Life
Studio: Miramax Home Video
Format: DVD - Color,Widescreen,Anamorphic - Closed-captioned,Subtitled
DVD Release Date: 10/08/2002
Original Release Date: 01/01/2001
Theatrical Release Date: 01/01/2001
Release Year: 2002
Run Time: 1hr 39min
Screens: Color,Widescreen,Anamorphic
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 3
MPAA Rating: R (Restricted)
Languages: Italian
Subtitles: English

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Movie Reviews

Nanni Moretti's "La stanza del figlio"
Nicholas Patruno | Paoli, PA USA | 11/24/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)

"This past summer I saw in Italy Nanni Moretti's most recent film "La stanza del figlio" ("The Son's Room"). It is Moretti's best film, in my view, and without a doubt one of the best I've seen in recent years. Moretti treats with immense sensitivity the subject of the interaction between different members of a family following a tragedy. Even if not to the extent of that in this movie, Moretti touches upon the pain that virtually of us have gone through sometime in our life and how each of us copes with it. He exposes us to our vulnerabilities, our sense of guilt, justified or not, and to the love that we often find difficult to express until it is too late.
Moretti presents characters with whom we can indentify and in so doing we can share their pain, their struggle to overcome it and we can find comfort in their final ability to get on with life. "The Son's Room" is a uniquely beautiful and touching film. It is fully deserving of the of the awards it has received and Italy can be proud for submitting this work as its entry for consideration for the Oscar nomination for this year's best foreign film. This is a movie that must be seen by all loving parents, and their children."
Simple, Strong, and Moving -- In Other Word, a Must-See
Tsuyoshi | Kyoto, Japan | 03/08/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)

"How can I write a review about this film? The story is so simple, but the final effect is so moving, and the ending scene and its music still haunts my mind. "The Son's Room" follows an Iralian family living in a local seaside town. Giovanni, father, is a psychiatrist, who sees a bunch of strange patients every day; he is just an ordinary guy who loves jogging or playing tennis with his apparently passive son. But suddenly his peaceful life changes one day when a patient calls him on Sunday. The father cancels his promise with his son, who instead goes scuba diving to the sea. Because of fateful decision, Giovanni and his family are never to see his son again.The remaining family member tries to pull themselves together, but they gradually fall apart until one day an unknown girl knocks on their door. She turns out to be a girlfriend who shared a one-day romance with their son. They come to know, through her story and photo, one secret love the son did not have a chance to disclose, and slowly come to terms with the grim reality.The simplicity of the film is deceptive. Some critics foolishly ignored the subtle touch of the film, which is deftly interwoven into the story. For instance, a teacher tells the parents that their son might have stolen a fossil sample from the school. Look how the father, apparently confident in his son's innocence, sneaks into his son's room only to be totally buffled. After all, parents don't know anything about their children. Or, see how one photograph their son's girl friend brings to them reveals his hidden character. The lost son is radiently smiling in the photo, which he never showed in front of the father, who wrongly considered his son doesn't have dynamic energy a youth should have. It is a great irony majestically realized"
"Very little of life is completely under one's control"
M. J Leonard | Silver Lake, Los Angeles, CA United States | 08/30/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)

"Happiness can be delicate. In just one swoop, it can stolen out from under you, just when you least expect it. The results can be often devastating - some can never recover. The family in the Italian film The Son's Room has found such happiness, but when tragedy suddenly strikes, they're engulfed in a whirlwind of grief and paralyzed with heartache.

Grief is perhaps the most tangled of human emotions, and the vagaries of sadness, love, and anger that comprise its essence are often very difficult to portray. Luckily, co-writer, director, and actor Nanni Moretti avoids all the usual clichés in this delicately nuanced and subtly acted film. The Son's Room is indeed a moving and weighty depiction of one family's attempts to heal after sudden death strikes them.

Moretti stars as Giovanni, a successful psychiatrist with a busy practice treating the assorted neurotics of the picture-perfect Northern Italian coastal town he and his family call home. Giovanni is a mild-mannered and kindly man, who has a sort of passive and submissive approach to living.

Giovanni also has a lovely family: he's happily married to gorgeous book publisher Paola (Laura Morante) and shares what he considers a close relationship with his teenaged daughter Irene (Jasmine Trinca) and son Andrea (Giuseppe Sanfelice).

He presides over his wife and two children with a kind of flaccid authority, enveloping them with the same deceptively passive doctoral concern with which he counsels his psychiatric patients. He supports, and heals, less by what he says than by what he doesn't say. He quietly coaches Andrea in soccer moves, while encouraging Irene to be more competitive at basketball.

Perhaps it's an ominous portent of what is to come, but the film opens as Andrea and his friends have been accused of stealing a valuable fossil from the school's Science department. Giovanni and Paola are surprised to find they entertaining the idea that their son may in fact be guilty as charged. However, no one takes the incident that seriously.

If this is the only drama that affects Giovanni's serene life, nothing prepares him for the sudden tragedy that occurs one sunny Sunday afternoon. Called away from home by a desperate client, Giovanni cancels his plans to go jogging with Andrea; and it's a fatal choice that haunts him for months to come.

The accident, when it happens, is so unexpected. The loss giving rise to sorrow, rage, tenderness, and the inexplicable feeling that hope is no longer possible. The family, emotionally fractured, is unable to continue on. Plunged into unimaginable grief, Giovanni attempts to carry on with his life, but bereft of his objectivity, he finds he's no longer able to function as an analyst.

The Son's Room, with it's subtle acting and its pensive, emotionally layered story, remains a startling testament to the delicate nuances of grief. And it's as though Moretti has invited the viewer to spy on a deeply personal event in the life of a very ordinary family. Like a fly on the wall we witness the sadness, the regret, the empty dinners and the overwhelming feeling of whether they could have done anything to stop the accident.

Moretti, whose eyes glitter with knowledge from within a bland, bearded, professorial face, gives a wonderful performance, as does the classy Morente as the beautiful, anguished Paola. While Giovanni wanders dazed through a theme park, numb to the grief, Paola fields a desire to talk about the absent child.

A savior for the family arrives in a letter addressed to the deceased, and when the writer appears on the family's doorstep, she offers the grace note that reminds them of the means by which happiness eventually repairs itself and the unavoidable fact that life goes on. There's no catharsis here, only a heartfelt exploration of what it means to grieve. Mike Leonard August 05.
The Capriciousness of Life
Buster49 | Utica, NY | 08/10/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Rarely has a film drawn me in so deeply that I remain affected days after I viewed it. "The Son's Room" is profound in its ability to create its moods especially in the latter half of the film. I feel that the director's presentation of this happy family, in the film's first half, is what allowed me to feel the result of an impending tragedy so personally. I kept thinking that I wanted everything to go back to the way it was before. I shared their grief as if it was my own.
I also applaud the presentation of an Italian society which is unlike the comic opera Italian experience presented in American films over the past decades going back to the silent era.
The film may not affect you as deeply as it affected me, but I highly recommend the absorbing story that is presented.