Saturno contro | Saturn in Opposition
DIRECTOR: Ferzan Özpetek | WRITERS: Ferzan Özpetek, Gianni Romoli | CAST: Stefano Accorsi, Margherita Buy, Pierfrancesco Favino, Serra Yilmaz, Ennio Fantastichini, Ambra Angiolini, Luca Argentero, Filippo Timi, Michelangelo Tommaso | Italy
Saturno contro is an ensemble piece about Italian upper middle class professionals, 30- and 40-something types — a happy straight couple with two kids, a happy gay couple with a restaurant-quality kitchen, a kooky mismatched straight couple, a “growing older” single gay man, a glamorous sexpot with a drug habit (she’s into astrology, hence the title) — whose outwardly perfect existences are put to the test by unforseen events. Or something. It’s all been done before, sometimes better and sometimes worse, and though at times it felt like I was watching an Italian update of thirtysomething, it never sank to those depths or rose to those heights. It was just okay, fine, not bad, not boring, not exciting, but interesting and well-acted enough to make me keep watching. The two leads from Le fate ignoranti — Stefano Accorsi and Margherita Buy — are on hand to play essentially the exact same characters they did before, only this time they’re married to each other and it’s Accorsi’s turn to cheat on long-suffering and petulant Margherita Buy, Italy’s answer to Meredith Baxter. The acting in general was just as okay as everything else, but then Ferzan Özpetek is a routine director, competent enough to get by but with an almost laughably pedestrian aesthetic.