Maria Sole Tognazzi (shown below), has here fashioned a tale of a woman, Irene -- played by the fine Italian actress, Margherita Buy (above), who won the Donatello award (think of it as the Italian "Oscar") for her excellent work -- whose job it is to play the "mystery guest" at five-star hotels around the world, staying in each as would normal guest, but rating that hotel for everything from its staff to its food to its cleanliness and more.
Steffano Accorsi (shown below), and even with some of the hotel guests whom she meets in her travels. There's one pair of newlyweds whom Irene takes under her wing when the hotel itself drops the ball, another very attractive older man with an eye for our gal,
Lesley Manville (below, left), the connection with whom jolts Irene into reassessing her life and relationships and what she might really be seeking. All of this is woven quite beautifully and naturally into the screenplay. There is no undue exposition; we learn as we move along.
Ivan Cotroneo, and Francesca Marciano, of the little things that make up character, that virtually every character in the film, small or large, rings truthful and fascinating, which means that we never for an instant lose interest in the movie and its rather large cast.
Fabrizia Sacchi and GianMarcoTognazzi, shown respectively, left and right, above) and two nieces (shown below). They have their own problems, too, which we come to understand, appreciate and even enjoy.
Music Box Films and running a sleek 85 minutes -- is one of the best films to open theatrically so far this year. It knows what it wants to accomplish and does exactly that -- in one of those rare cases of "reach" and "grasp" coordinating perfectly.
The Paris Theater, and in the weeks to come will open in cities across the country. Click here, then click on THEATERS to view all currently scheduled playdates, cities & theaters.