In Three Floors, Nanni Moretti transplanted Eshkol Nevo’s acclaimed novel Three Floors Up from Tel Aviv to Rome, for an intricate, interlinked tapestry – three hyperlinked shorts meshed into a crisscrossing whole – that provided for compelling, operatic and voyeuristic peeks into bourgeois dysfunction, malaise, moral transgressions and self-centeredness. Grief, memories, self-destructive streaks, loneliness and unresolved animosities juxtaposed its sombre melancholy while underscoring the wry aphorism that life, despite everything, must go on. The film begun with a brilliant opening sequence that immediately established the context and set the ball rolling for the three families living at an upscale condo in a leafy neighbourhood. Monica (Alba Rohrwacher) – who stays alone under the spectre of insanity, as her husband works in oil-rigs – is trying to catch a ride to the hospital as she’s going into labour, when she witnesses a disturbed young guy (Alessandro Sperduti) – having a turbulent relationship with his disciplinarian father (Moretti) and doting mother Dora (Margherita Buy) – accidentally hit a passer-by, before crashing into the apartment inhabited by the cocky, well-to-do Lucio (Riccardo Scamarcio) whose life and marriage will get torn apart when his daughter goes briefly missing in the company of their senile neighbour and later when he allows himself to get seduced by strikingly beautiful teenage girl (Denise Tantucci). The story of the intensely lonely Monica, slowly slipping to the other side, was especially haunting, while the soft-spoken Dora – who struggled between her husband and son, before tragically losing both – was quite affecting too; Rohrwacher and Buy, in turn, were the standout performers in the ensemble. The lustrous visuals, deliberate pacing, and lovely piano and accordion-based score added gentle touches while the film intercut across the stories.
Director: Nanni Moretti
Genre: Drama/Family Drama/Omnibus Film/Ensemble Film