Chris Knipp Writing: Movies, Politics, Art


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PostPosted: Wed Nov 20, 2019 11:55 am 
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GIUSEPPE MORDINI: THE INVISIBLE WITNESS/IL TESTIMONE INVISIBLE (2018) - CINEMA ITALIAN STYLE (CIS)

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MIRIAM LEONE, RICARDO SCARMARCIO IN IL TESTIMONE INVISIBLE

No spoilers

A man (Ricardo Scarmarcio) accused of the murder of his mistress (Miriam Leone), who's been found bludgeoned with him in a locked room. He testifies at length, with lengthy illustrative flashbacks that make up much of the film,) to a woman trial lawyer (Maria Paiato) who's never lost a case and says she will get him out of jail time. His story uncovers another crime involving a collision and a deer in the hilly lakeside Trentino region, the accused and mistress in one car, a young man apparently dead in the other. A coverup; another driver; a chance encounter with the dead young man's parents; blackmail; deception; surprise twists; an unmasking à la Brian De Palma follow.

This is a tightly paced entertainment that holds your attention throughout but, with its absurdity and plot holes, loses your credulity early. Unlike the pair in Giuseppe Capotondi's NIC 2010 hit : The Double Hour/La dopia ora (2009), this couple has no chemistry (they're both married and he's an award-winning entrepreneur) and the action feels canned. However you may enjoy staying one step ahead of the plot. You will stay even further ahead if you've seen Oriol Paulo's 2017 Spanish more logically titled Spanish mystery thriller Contratiempo, of which this is a remake. The Italian screenplay was adapted by Mordini with Massimiliano Cantoni from Oriol Paulo's original one. Like many other Italian films today, The Invisible Witness is well crafted but takes no chances.

Italy, 2018, 102 min., opened in Italy Dec. 2018. It has shown in two festivals, Seattle and Leiden. Showing Nov. 22 in Cinema Italian Style in San Francisco, at the Vogue Theater.

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