Italian Contemporary Film Festival 2013: Cavalli (2011)
Michele Rho shows plenty of potential as a director in his first feature film, the dramatic, but misguided, Cavalli (Horses). The film tells the story of the unwavering love and loyalty between Alessandro and his younger brother, Pietro. While brotherhood seems to be the film’s main topic, parenthood, romance, and manhood are also discussed.
Set in the late 1800’s, Cavalli begins with childhood innocence of boyish laughter. However, the film’s slightly darker tone is ever-present. After the death of their mother, each boy is gifted with a beautiful, untamed horse to care for. Adventure-seeking Alessandro begins his search for fortune and status in a nearby town. Calm and quiet Pietro finds happiness working with horses in the stables closer to home.
The transition of time in Cavalli becomes confusing and choppy during the later parts of the film. And while the protagonists are endearing, the story lines are too stagnant to evoke any emotional attachment or excitement. The film fails to create any true conflict, despite emphasizing the brothers’ contrasting personalities.
There are too many subplots with Alessandro and Pietro’s individual stories that never come together cohesively on screen. However, the cinematographer takes advantage of the beautiful Italian countryside setting that adds glimmers of hope to the gloomy film. Unfortunately, the beautiful visuals do not make up for Cavalli’s sub-par plot. The brothers end the film exactly where they started: fiercely loyal and protective over each other. As the credits roll, you are left asking yourself, “What was the whole point?”
For more information about Cavalli and the Italian Contemporary Film Festival, visit http://www.icff.ca
Screening Times for Cavalli
Tuesday, July 2, 7:30 pm Reception and 9:30 pm Movie
AMC Theatre, Cinema 24
A Gallery of Images from Cavalli