In some ways Silvio Berlusconi was the Italian Donald Trump — fat, corrupt, arrogant. Except the ten-years-older Berlusconi (who’s now serving in the Italian Parliament) has a lot more dough. The former Prime Minister of Italy (three separate terms, nine years in total) owns Mediaset, the largest broadcasting company in that country. Berlusconi’s terms as Prime Minister service were plagued by conflicts of interests, sex scandals and a generally intemperate performance marked by poor judgment.

I’ve been hearing for well over a year that Paolo Sorrentino‘s Loro (Sundance Selects, 9.20) doesn’t work, that it suffocates in its own excess and delirium. But the trailer seems diverting enough — eye-candy avoiding the soulful at all costs.

In Italy Loro was released as two separate features or “acts”: Loro 1 (4.24.18, 100 minutes) and Loro 2 (5.10.18, ditto). The British version and the one that will open stateside in September is a single entity that will run 145 minutes (or something in that vicinity).

The Rotten Tomatoes rating is 83 with an audience score of 54%.

From Wendy Idle’s Guardian review, posted on 4.20.19: “To give Sorrentino credit, Loro is nothing if not visually arresting. As everything from The Young Pope to The Great Beauty has shown, Sorrentino is a satirist who thrives in a hermetically enclosed environment sealed off by privilege.

“But it’s telling that the most affecting moment comes at the end, when the film ventures out from its bubble: a statue of Christ is craned out of an earthquake-ravaged church — a nod to Fellini’s La Dolce Vita — and the tone changes from hyperrealist to neorealist. It’s a profoundly moving scene, this slow pan along the broken faces of the workers. But it feels unearned. Stolen, even. But then again, perhaps that’s the point.”