Black Souls (Anime nere) 5.0 stars

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Three brothers – Rocco (Peppino Mazzotta), the brains, Luigi (Marco Leonardi), the brawn, and Luciano (Fabrizio Ferracane), the goat-herding outcast – each with a different vision of what direction the “family business” should take. The stories are workaday, but the storytelling is anything but in Francesco Munzi’s instant gangster classic. Most of the action plays out between a new city located in the shadowy foothills and the ancient villa, overrun by goats and perched high atop the mountain, that one of the brothers calls home. Working in both narrative and documentary mode from a novel by Gioacchino Criaco, director and co-writer Munzi has assembled what could amount to the quietest gangster chronicle ever made, with many of the key character shadings imparted through slight gestures and nimble movements of the camera. The ending left me both dumbstruck and questioning why no one has never thought of closing a mob movie in such a neat and logical manner.

Scott Marks

Length: 1 hour, 43 minutes

Rated: NR

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