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AMERICA LATIN (2021, ITA) – 6.5/10

Massimo Sisti (standard good Elio Germano) is a successful dentist from the Italian town of Latina, not far from Rome. His business is going great, he lives in a luxurious villa with a swimming pool outside the city with his wife, two daughters and three dogs, but all this will begin to fall apart when one day he descends into the basement of the house and finds an unknown girl tied to a post and blindfolded. through the mouth. It is not at all clear to Massim how the girl ended up there and who placed her in his basement. He even begins to think if it is possible that he got drunk like that with his best friend one Friday and did it himself, without even remembering? Or is someone setting him up? Maybe it was his friend who asked him for a loan for the umpteenth time before?

This psychological drama/thriller was a step back for the brothers Damian and Fabio D’Innocenzo, who previously presented themselves with the exceptional and subversive shocking drama “Favolacce”, which also won them the Silver Bear for the best screenplay at the Berlin festival. “America Latina” premiered in Venice, and in the main program, but this borderline surreal attempt at subversion and dark social criticism did not work so well. One of the reasons is certainly that it becomes clear to us relatively quickly what is actually happening here, and for the reason that I do not spoil it, I will not go into some deeper psychoanalysis.

This whole film is actually pulled off by the excellent Germano (also winner of the Silver Bear for Best Actor in the same year as the brothers, for the role of a mentally handicapped naïve painter in “Volevo nascondermi”), a four-time winner of the Best Italian Actor award. For the Italian actor of the year, Germano was also nominated for the role of a man who will descend into complete paranoia, and this paranoia will eventually turn into real madness. The D’Innocenzo brothers must be acknowledged for having created another completely twisted and unusual story and that “America Latina” is a visually and stylistically produced film by authors who really know what they are doing. But this just didn’t sit nearly as well with me as the diabolical and dark predecessor.