I am Love ★★★★½
(Italy, 120 min)
Dir: Luca Guadagnino
Starring: Tilda Swinton, Edoardo Gabriellini, Flavio Parenti, Pippo Delbono, Marisa Berenson.
We first meet Emma at the Recchi family compound as they prepare to fete the family patriarch. The demeanor of the Recchi clan is as cold as the blustery snowfall going on outside, save for the smiles from Emma as she reassures her children that all is well. Furthermore, the camera’s reluctance to linger on Emma marks her as an outsider. She rather is – Emma is a Russian woman who has married into this wealthy Italian family via Tancredi (Pippo Delbono), and there isn’t the least visible bit of warmth between Emma and her husband. Emma seems ill at ease with the whole group and looks more comfortable in the company of her servants and cooks.
When Emma’s son, Edoardo (Flavio Parenti), receives a visit from his friend, Antonio (Edoardo Gabriellini), things start to change. Antonio is a talented chef, and after catering a party for Edoardo, the two make plans to open a restaurant. One day, Emma and some of the family drop into Antonio’s restaurant to get a taste of her son’s business prospects.
Anchored by Swinton’s radiant performance, the elements of I am Love culminate to a most rapturous event. If haven’t said it clearly enough, I loved this film!