March 2, 2012
Studio: Zeitgeist Films
Director: Gianni Di Gregorio
MPAA Rating: N/A
Screenwriters: Gianni Di Gregorio, Valerio Attanasio
Starring: Gianni Di Gregorio, Valeria De Franciscis, Alfonso Santagata
Official website: ZeitgeistFilms.com/TheSaltofLife
In his warm and witty follow-up to his 2010 Italian sensation Mid-August Lunch, writer-director-actor Gianni Di Gregorio has created another irresistible manifesto of his love of women — but this time he plays a middle-aged retiree who has become invisible to all distaff Romans, regardless of age or relation. In "The Salt of Life" he contends with an aristocratic, spendthrift mother (again played by Lunch's great nonagenarian Valeria de Franciscis); a wife who is more patronizing friend than romantic partner; a daughter (played by Di Gregorio's real-life daughter Teresa) with a slacker boyfriend whom Gianni unwillingly befriends; and, a wild young neighbor who sees him merely as her dog walker. Watching his "codger" friends snare beautiful younger women on the sun-kissed cobblestones of Trastevere, Gianni tries his polite, utterly gracious best to generate some kind of extracurricular love life — with both hilarious and poignant results.