In his best film in years, Marco Bellocchio crafts a stringently moral tale (2002) that carries a hint of horror, as if his hero had caught a whiff of hellfire. Ernesto (Sergio Castellitto, in a broodingly charismatic performance) is awakened one morning by a Vatican emissary who reveals that Ernesto's deceased mother, a woman of pedestrian accomplishments and garden-variety faith, has been proposed for sainthood. This determinedly atheist son subsequently discovers the dark motives, high ambitions, and venal dreams that have led his family to mount a secret campaign toward this end. Now they need his help. Bellocchio constructs Ernesto's moral dilemma with evident relish, placing his character between a morass of hypocrisy and a yawning pit of childhood guilt. The film's chiaroscuro lighting and sumptuous imagery suggest the netherworlds Ernesto's intellect so rigorously rejects. In Italian with subtitles. 103 min.
Sorry there are no upcoming showtimes for My Mother's Smile