17 February 2006 | jotix100
The miracle maker
Leo Tolstoy's story was adapted with great style by Vittorio and Paolo Tviani, with the help of Tonino Guerra, an excellent writer on his own, and a man that has been connected with wonderful movies in his native Italy. This is a story told by the Tavianis with extreme care in magnificent locations in their usual way that pays a lot of attention to detail and the beauty of the Italian landscape. The musical score by Nicola Piovani, one of their usual collaborators, contribute to make the film a joy when we listen to the atmospheric music. Cinematographer Giuseppe Lanci captures with precision the gorgeous scenery around L'Aquila and the region into images that leave the viewer breathless.
The story is a strange one. When Sergio, the young man from humble origins, gets the attention of Charles III of Naples attention, he doesn't even suspect of the deceit he is made a part of. The beautiful Cristina reveals a secret that will be pivotal in Sergio's life. In horror, he flees that glamorous life at the court and becomes a priest. He wants to be no ordinary priest, he wants to go to a remote area to become a monk.
It's at that location that he is discovered because of having performed a miracle. The solitude he is seeking intrudes in his life and the final blow arrives in the form of a disturbed young woman who has more than a cure in mind. The noble Sergio decides to go back to the world he left behind because he realizes he can't stay in a place where is no longer where he wants to be.
Julian Sands is perfect as Sergio the mystical man. Natassja Kinski plays Cristina. Charlotte Gainsbourg makes a great appearance as the disturbed Matilda. Patricia Millaret, Margarita Lozano, and the rest of the crew make the film a joy to watch.
The Taviani brothers should be seen more often because their films are always so beautifully crafted and leave their grateful fans awaiting eagerly for the next film.