The breezy directorial debut of Gomorrah screenwriter Gianni di Gregorio (who also stars), Mid-August Lunch follows broke, aimless, middle-aged Gianni, who resides with his 93-year-old mother in their ancient apartment. With the rent passed due, Gianni’s landlord offers to forgive the debt if his begrudging tenant agrees to look after the landlord’s elderly mother while he skips town for Pranzo di Ferragosto — Italy’s grand summer holiday. When the landlord shows up with an extra auntie in tow, word travels to Gianni’s friend Marcello, also looking to offload his madre for a few days. Gianni scrambles to look after the needs of these four fiery nonagenarians, as temperatures rise in their cramped quarters.
“A film of rare benevolence that treats its subjects with dignity and playfulness… in its sedate way, the film bucks convention at every turn.” — Catherine Shoard, The Guardian
Gianni Di Gregorio
Gianni Di Gregorio (story), Simone Riccardini (story), Gianni Di Gregorio (screenplay)
Valeria De Franciscis, Marina Cacciotti, Maria Calì, Grazia Cesarini Sforza
Italian (with English subtitles)