“Tre Piani”, how do you say “OK Boomer” in Italian?


If there was a way to see movies like you can sometimes listen to music, not knowing who wrote, who thought, who performed, I’m pretty sure I never would have attributed Tre Piani to Nanni Moretti. We should of course not be fixated on the young director who, forty years ago, blew up the conventions of Italian cinema. But I believe that seeing this braid of agreed and incoherent stories supposed to represent the evils that overwhelm us today, I would have said, baring the face of the director of Palombella Rossa (1989) in one of the opening shots of the film: “Hey, Moretti has gone back to acting. “

For the first time, Nanni Moretti staged the story of another, in this case the novel Three floors by the Israeli writer Eshkol Nevo (Gallimard, “From the whole world”, 2018). With Federica Pontremoli and Valia Santella, he transposed it to Rome where three family units ferment in an opulent building. On the ground floor there are Lucio (Riccardo Scamarcio) and Sara (Elena Lietti) with their granddaughter Francesca.

One night, the frosted window that separates them from the street is smashed by the car of Andrea (Alessandro Sperduti), the son of Vittorio (Nanni Moretti) the inflexible magistrate whom Dora (Margherita Buy), the lawyer nevertheless loves. . Drunk, Andrea ran over and killed a passerby, under the eyes of Monica (Alba Rohrwacher) who was going alone to the maternity ward to give birth to a first child, a daughter, born to a father who was still absent.

Twelve Plagues of Egypt

That’s a lot for a first sequence, it should be enough to feed a choral score made up of parental guilt, gender war and social responsibility. Necessity of literary adaptation or fear of failing, this initial coup de force is followed by an avalanche of misfortunes which wants to compete with the twelve plagues of Egypt: mental illness, sexual delinquency, senile dementia, political corruption and, finally, irruption of the question of migrants treated in a sequence that one hesitates to attribute to unconsciousness or cynicism.

In any case, the result is there: Nanni Moretti found in this fictional refugee home the European equivalent of the “magical negro” (“magical negro”), this figure of American cinema who appears to help white characters to take awareness of their imperfection. The sharpness of the political analysis of yesteryear has given way to the new conventions of a bitter generation. We can also guess at the bitterness that emerges when it comes to addressing the issue of sexual violence. How do you say “OK Boomer” in Italian?

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