I really liked this Italian language movie, "Mamma", with subtitles, for it seemed to show the famous tenor, Gigli, in a more relaxed, informal atmosphere, more of his real self in his acting you might say.
He again plays the role of a great singer, Mario Sarni, and is newly married, bringing home his young wife, Donata, to meet his mother. There are differences along the way that inevitably surface, she being a city girl and more at ease with her invited city friends, to the detriment of her new family and surroundings. Included in her circle of friends is the tantalizing Giulio who is smitten with Donata and has hopes or convincing her to take him seriously. All too soon the idea of a possible separation looms so there's lots of conflict to be resolved. Enter "Mamma" who has a way of succeeding in her plans.
The mother role of Mme. Sarni is finely rendered by Emma Gramatica, a great Italian actress in her day, although I feel there's a tendency to be too high-blown at times and melodramatic, but perhaps that was a quality of the times.
This is an opportunity to appreciate the artistry of Beniamino Gigli who also sings arias from the operas Othello, and Rigoletto, plus more. "Mamma" is considered as his most well-known film and the title song was so popular that it was sung during the World War 2 by the Italian soldiers and prisoners of war. Very memorable honour indeed!
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