August 22, 2022 0 comments

Alina Reynolds wonders in NY portrayed by Vanessa Kirby in a production by Adam Leon.

Our review: At this date the movie has been rated 5.1 out of 10 on IMDB and we must say, for a production that has been on hold for 3 years, that, unfortunately, it doesn’t bring much to the screen than Vanessa being a good actress and a lovely face. There isn’t a base on it at all, and everyone can see it wasn’t scripted at all, it was an experiment. This doesn’t mean it is a bad movie, but it definitely doesn’t mean it is a masterpiece. Through this experience (and what are we without them?), it makes you think if our memory really matters and if it might be condemning us to our limits rather than making us liberated.

Slant Magazine interview:

Kirby and Leon, from their respective positions, hold onto the core of Alina with remarkable consistency throughout Italian Studies. This collaboration delivers a film with a more mystical quality than Leon’s two previous New York-set adventures—Gimme the Loot and Tramps—a vision of the city that actively forges rather than merely reveals individual identity.

I spoke with Kirby and Leon days before the theatrical and on-demand release of Italian Studies. The collaborators discussed the roots of their partnership, how they navigated the portrayal of the main character’s sudden amnesia, and why Kirby feels like Alina functions as a secondary character reflecting the adolescent energy in the film.

Vanessa, I read you refer to Adam as “the best New York film director.” What is it about his approach to the city that you find so special?

Vanessa Kirby: I was just thinking this morning about how Adam’s movies are like the soul of New York. He described this one as almost like a pre-pandemic artifact of New York, because the world has changed so significantly. We started it in 2018, so it’s like a time capsule in a way. Life is so different now. So, yeah, I loved his movies, and it was sort of natural in a way that it would be about New York. We talked about Lost in Translation and how cities become one being, essentially, and how you would look at the nature of an urban jungle through the eyes of somebody who’s never been in one before. What would it look like to really look at the environment we built as new and how that environment shapes our identity and our sense of selves? What are the things that form that? Is that elusive, and is it getting stranger as we go?
Adam Leon: We’d been talking for a while about trying to do something together. She really wanted to be thrown out into the streets.

VK: Wait, wait, wait, I don’t think I ever said that! I don’t think I said to throw me out into the street. Remember—
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