ON THE SEA (SUL MARE) (2012)


Alessandro D’Alatri’s latest film about first love. It’s a fairly typical coming of age film in which a “country boy” (here a young man who works the tourist trade on an island during the summer and illegally works construction during the winter) falls in love with the “city girl” (a young woman in college). The love story itself is sweet and at times effective, but it takes a while to get going; the first third concerns an event at a construction site in which our hero saves the life of a fellow worker, which doesn’t really seem to have anything to do with anything, except maybe, possibly and vaguely symbolically. In fact, there’s a lot of symbolism like the falling (which works at other times) as well as a psychological condition that affects the young man when he thinks the young woman has jilted him—he forgets how to walk, which never really connects emotionally since he does almost nothing but walk the whole film. Dario Castillo works well in his film debut as the young man whose heart gets broken.

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