28 June 2006 | HiddenVoice
Signs of hope amidst a senseless war;a love trying to spread through the tragedies of this war.
The Tiger and the Snow is the best film Benigni has released since Life is Beautiful.Although no where as good as that film,this film still manages to provide humor in the midst of tragedy and horrors of war.I really like the way he blends comedy and tragedy and he's really good at that.But there are times when he overreaches and doesn't focus on the actual plot and goes beyond.But this is one film that you shouldn't miss and will definitely allow the audiences to swallow Benigni's last effort that didn't turn out that good.
A poet who talks only about life and love is struggling to woo a women that we know very little about ,except that she keeps appearing in his dreams as his bride.He keeps having the same dream with her in his dreams.So when he comes face to face with her,he decides to get her at all cost.But after almost coming close,she leaves him and he never hears from her again.Then all the sudden he gets a call that she is in bad condition stuck in Baghdad during the American invasion in Iraq.So begins his journey to Baghdad and once he reaches there ,he finds himself in a completely different place.He discovers that the women that he's in love with has some kind of sickness that needs to be cured within 4 hours.So the poet goes out on the streets,deserts,roads to find a medicine.And on his journey he comes across various odd,funny and touching situations.
This film is simple and straightforward ,just like Life is Beautiful,and just like that film,Benigni presents his story in a rather amusing sort of manner.He brings surprises and turns and joy whilst telling a weak story.He makes most out of himself to keep the audience unaware of the flaws and hold their attention with scenes that really have lasting effects.
One scene,in particular was towards the end,when the Poet and his friend Fuad(Jean Reno)look up the sky and talk about god and something related to existentialism ,they marvel the beautiful night sky revealing gorgeous stars and at the same time the bombings are taking place.Showing that even in the most horrific situations ,you can still find amusement,and beauty.There were many moments in the film that really make you laugh,feel,and sometimes coming close to cry for the characters.And for that Benigni has achieved something.
Benigni is 90% on screen,and that becomes repetitive.He can get on your nerves and annoy you to death and you just wish you wouldn't get to see him for at least five minutes.Benigni is covering the whole screen time and that is one of the drawbacks.He is so concerned about himself that he forgets about the development of some of the characters.But ,nevertheless he does charm you and puts a smile on your face,either a feigned smile or comfortable smile.He does leave an impact and you have to admire his talent as a Writer ,Director,and Actor.For other cast members,Jean Reno is surprisingly effective,(I didn't knew he was so good in Italian Language).He portrays his character with depth.You feel this secrecy in him.He is trying to hide something and then in the end you see it.He really is a standout other than Benigni.While Benigni's wife is not all that impressive.Most of the film,she doesn't act but just Lay on the bed.So ,she doesn't have much to do,other than admiring her husbands charm besides her.
This is a very well made film that revolves around the Iraq war.Probably first of the many films that will have the Iraq war as the concept.And this first attempt is by far very ,very satisfying.I really liked it.Don't expect it to be as wonderful or touching or even emotional as Life is Beautiful.Yes,it is sweet,it has its moments of success but all the while you're liking it, Benigni comes along and ruins your mood.Though,not fully successful,it still goes down as the first contender for the Foreign Language Category at the Oscars.But I doubt it.