This understated, cards-close-to-its-chest drama shows the cultural divide between north and south Italy (both corrupt, though in different ways) and its influence on the failure of relatives and friends to connect in the tidy, ordered ways we expect from conventional movies. The finale of this too-obscure film dares to disappoint our expectations but suggests the sound of the sea is enough to keep a man going.
I caught half this film on television, years ago, quite by chance. I was arrested by its taciturnity, by its luminosity, by the delicacy and the brittleness of the connections between the characters. It has a depth of connection to place, and the silent struggle of North and South, that links it to so many great Italian films.