Combustible Celluloid
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With: Roberto Benigni, Jean Reno, Nicoletta Braschi, Tom Waits, Emilia Fox, Gianfranco Varetto, Giuseppe Battiston, Lucia Poli, Chiara Pirri, Anna Pirri, Andrea Renzi, Abdelhafid Metalsi, Amid Farid
Written by: Roberto Benigni, Vincenzo Cerami
Directed by: Roberto Benigni
MPAA Rating: Unrated
Language: Italian, English with English subtitles
Running Time: 114
Date: 10/14/2005

The Tiger and the Snow (2006)

1 Star (out of 4)

War Groan

By Jeffrey M. Anderson

Roberto Benigni's transparent neediness comes out in full force in his new film, a naked attempt to repeat his long-lost Oscar love from Life Is Beautiful (1998). This time, he plays a poet who travels to Iraq during the 2003 attacks to rescue his true love (Nicoletta Braschi), lying comatose in a bombed-out Baghdad hospital. He rushes out into the danger zone to get the things she needs, and babbles at her constantly (she's a perfect "straight man" for him). Benigni has nothing to say about the Iraq war, as if merely referencing it adds importance to the film. His peculiar editing choices and snail's pace only increase the film's gnawing of creepy discomfort. Jean Reno co-stars, and Tom Waits appears as himself.

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