17 January 2006 | MaxBorg89
After the box office "failure" of Natale in India (actually, it was the fifth most successful movie of 2003, but it made less money than Natale sul Nilo and was out-grossed by Leonardo Pieraccioni's Il Paradiso all'Improvviso), producer Aurelio De Laurentiis and director Neri Parenti tried to make a new kind of Christmas comedy: three separate stories, whose main characters meet once or twice during the film. The result is an acceptable, if occasionally disappointing, film.
One episode sees Christian De Sica's plastic surgeon against colleague (and ex wife) Sabrina Ferilli, while their new spouses try to keep things calm; another one has Massimo Boldi calmly enjoying a relationship with a woman 30 years his junior, only to criticize his daughter for having a similar affair with a 60-year old American (Danny De Vito); the third protagonist is Anna Maria Barbera, who has won some competition: she gets to spend the Christmas holidays with her idol, Ronn Moss. And all this takes place on the same location, Gstaad, Switzerland.
Now, I have to say I enjoy these kinds of attempts to make a 20-year old franchise (which ended with 2005's Natale a Miami) more appealing and fun. In this case the swearing has been (partially) toned down, and a few "usual suspects" have been left at home and replaced with more "sofisticated" people. The problem is, the movie doesn't always work. More specifically, the Barbera part of the movie: Ronn Moss isn't particularly memorable, and his co-star's performance is basically a big-screen impression of her famous TV character Sconsolata.
On the other hand, though, I quite enjoyed the other two stories, particularly Massimo Boldi and Danny De Vito interacting (with the only unpleasant detail of De Vito being dubbed), and the former spoofing John Travolta in an amusing disco scene. And there's of course the one sequence that had even the most cynical grinning: the embarrassing meeting between De Sica and Boldi, the latter having just accidentally OD'd on his US friend's Viagra.
So, not an Italian comedy classic, like Benigni or Verdone's movies, but still worth a try...