Sweet Dreams (2016) - full transcript

Always inseparable with his beloved and joyful young mother, 9-year-old Massimo, now has to endure the tremendous blow from her death and the insufferable burden of accepting his loss. But no, this can't be true, his mother could not have died of a sudden heart attack, moreover, she simply cannot be his guardian angel from heaven, because Massimo, strongly believes that his vital mother is very much alive, temporarily residing in the United States. As the years pass by, profoundly traumatised little Massimo still refusing to accept the tragic event, he will silently continue carrying grief's heavy load on his shoulders, growing up to become a distant and detached journalist who chose to shut down his emotions, not out of revenge, but in order to survive. However, inevitably, after the death of his father, Massimo will need to confront his past in the very source of his persisting anguish, his house, react to the pain, refuse to be a victim, and ultimately, face courageously a well-hidden truth that was kept in the family for over thirty years.

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They're kissing.

Don't stare at them.

Are they boyfriend and girlfriend?

I don't know.


Mum, we have to get off.

- Where?
- This is our stop.

Shall we go round once again?


Sweet dreams.


Mum, dad! Dad!

- Massimo, come back to your room.
- We're here, we'll see to the boy.

- Where's my mum?
- She wasn't feeling well.

Get him!



Come, Massimo.
Don't catch cold.

TURIN 1999

Let us not forget that the workers,
the wonderful ltalian workers...

I want to see my mum.

Your mum's in hospital,
with your dad.

- So let's go to the hospital then.
- Your dad said tomorrow.

But today's already tomorrow.

..eight, seven, six,

five, four, three, two, one...

Happy NewYear!

- Happy NewYear!
- Massimo...

Happy NewYear.

- Happy NewYear.
- Happy NewYear.

- We didn't want to wake you.
- Happy NewYear.

- Why are you crying?
- Happy NewYear to you too, Massimo.

- Good morning.
- Hello.

- Nice roses.
- They're for my mum, she's in hospital.

Shall we go?

- Where?
- Come on, let's go.

Massimo, come here.

Sit down.

Massimo, your mum
is your guardian angel now.

For some time she'd been asking God
to let her fly up there

so she could protect you better,

and God... granted her wish.

He called her to be with him.

What do you mean "she asked"?

Did she actually ask?


How does he know?
Mum asked God.

- I don't believe you.
- Your mum's in heaven now.

- She's happier than us there.
- I want to go there too then.

- It's not us who decide.
- I want to see her.

When the time is right.

She can't have just left
without saying goodbye to me!

Stop it.

Shall we go and say a prayer
for your mum, together?

May she rest in eternal peace, Lord.

May it be a short rest, Lord.

Let perpetual light shine upon her,
may she rest in peace. Amen.

Holy Mary, full of Grace,
the Lord is with thee...

Dearest Mum, I implore you,
please don't leave me, have mercy,

may light shine on you always,
all your life close to me.

Stay with me, I implore you,
don't leave me, don't leave me.

Stay with me

I impIore you

Make me suffer

Make me go crazy

Make me be damned

But just say yes

I'd die for you

I Iive for you

Life of my Iife

I don't care about the past

I don't care who you've been with

Stay with me

With me

Stay with me

Study now.

Life of my Iife.

I don't care about the past

I don't care who you've been with

Stay with me... with me.

- The newspaper.
- Yes.


come here.

My dear Massimo.

My condolences.

Be strong.

Try to be strong,

you're not the first
nor will you be the last.

My mum's not in there.

- With time, you'll see...
- My mum's not in there, she's not!

What are you saying?

Open the coffin then,
let's see.

What are you saying?

Go and get Massimo..

Go ahead.

Come, Massimo,
they're doing the blessing.

- No, I don't want to.
- Come on.


You promised paradise to the thief
who repented...

Stop it, Massimo, enough.

Have mercy, Lord,
for this departed soul.

Do not condemn her for her actions
during her life on earth.

- For Christ, Our Lord.
- Amen.

Mum, wake up.

Mum, wake up!

They're taking you away, mum...

wake up,

they're taking you away, mum!

- Ma'am, please, stay with my son.
- Mum!

Come out, mum!
They're taking you away, mum!

Come out!



Belfagor, I entrust myself to you.

Help me and I will serve you
for all my life.

Hi, Massimo!

Good morning, miss.

Good morning.

Sara, will you close the door please?

Let's take the register.

- Baros?
- Here.

- Beltramo?
- Absent.

- Benedetto?
- Here.

- Bocca?
- Here.

- Bongiovanni?
- Here.

- Corrieri?
- Here.

Eat another one.

I don't want to.

It's a shame to leave them.

- Do you have much homework?
- I've finished it.

Let's go!

Come on.


Go Turin! Olé!

The ball rebounds mid-field
and is caught by Agroppi,

who attempts an impetuous strike
but fails.

He dribbles, does an about turn
and Puja gets the ball.

It's Carelli again, then Ferrini,
then Carelli advances,

Torino FC resists,
the away team retreats

and is unable to interrupt the hammering
offensive of the home team

driven by the constant cheering
of the stadium.

And finally Moschino
brings the action to life

with a sweeping pass
to Claudio Sala.

Moschino, not much hair to show
but all brains.

Sala, it's Sala once again.

Cross-kick to the centre and
Puja attempts to score... post, goal!

- Goal! Goal!
- Want to catch your death?

Puja celebrates with his team,

his incursion, out of the penalty area,
changes everything.

Stop it!

Go to bed, go on.

Get under the covers.

And now Torino FC's in the lead,
1 - 0!


come here.


this is my son, Massimo.

Hello, Massimo.

Say hello.

- Hello.
- From today, Mita will live with us.

- Where will I sleep?
- With me.

You can carry on, thank you.

Thank you, Belfagor.

- Can you stir it for me?
- Why?

My mum always used to do it.

Drink up.

Aren't you going to finish it?

"All things are directed
towards the ground

by the force of gravity.

Do an experiment."

- Who is it?
- Ma'am, I need to talk to you.

Good evening.

Deny, always deny.

Yes, Belfagor, my Lord.

Perhaps it was a gust ofwind...

- I've thought about it.
- About what?

Good evening.

Come here a moment.



You'd better tell me the truth.

Go on.

Be honest.

Do you realise you could've killed


What's this smell?

Open the windows!

- Belfagor, save me!
- Jesus!

Save me! Save me!


I can't be your mum.

Mum, forgive me, I betrayed you.

Good evening.

Here, sir, I don't need them anymore.

You have one month to vacate the flat
before the exchange of deeds.

Ifyou need to store your furniture,
I can give you a contact.

The furniture's not a problem,
it's the small objects.

My father's archive, the letters,

the books, the photos...

- The useless stuff.
- You've plenty of stuff.

- I'm here ifyou need anything.
- Thanks.

- Goodbye.
- See you.

The exceptionaI athIetic preparation
Iike gymnasts,

of our divers.

Here are our divers:

Giorgio Cagnotto,

his excellent positioning on
the diving board, Iet's see his dive.

Here's Klaus Dibiasi,
goId medaIIist once again,

from the pIatform.

Great memories

of the ltalians
at the OIympics in Monaco.

Kick, kick!
10, 11 , 12, 13, 14...

We're finished, out of the pool!

Out! Come on!

Hurry up!

Come on, Massimo, let's go.

Come on, get your bathrobes
and get dried.

Come on, Massimo, let's go.

Come on.

Thank you.

Good morning.

Follow me.

Wait there, in the piano room.

Good morning.

Come here.

Sit down.

- Are you Massimo?
- Yes.

Enrico's best friend.

- You're very well-mannered.
- Thank you.

And handsome too.

Almost as much as Enrico.

Do you enjoy life, Massimo?

- Yes, I'd say so.
- Me too, loads.

Not my life, I like my son,

for him, yes.

I'm sure he'll have a wonderful life.

I have to protect him,
at least until he's twenty.

But instead I smoke...
what a wretch!

Now let's go into the lion's den.



Are you hungry?

Go away, mum, get out!

Go away!

- Thanks.
- How's it going?

- Why do you treat her like that?
- She's a pain in the arse.

But she's your mother.

I can't stand her,
she's always interfering.

- Come, come.
- Your house is amazing.

Forget about that,
look at my records,

my dad brought them from London.

Deep Purple,
King Crimson...

and The Rolling Stones.
This is the original cover.

Children, your afternoon snack.



- You're even taking your shoes off?
- So what?

Come on, get out,
leave us alone.

Stop complaining!

- Go away!
- You've taken the worst ofyour dad.

Killer heart...

I should've broken my leg
the day I married him,

but if I had, you wouldn't be here.

- Leave me alone!
- Darling!

Leave me alone!

Don't touch that!


Surrender, I'm the strongest!

No, I'm the strongest one
in the world!


I surrender.

Come here.

You can't win!

You're hurting me!

You're hurting me, enough,
I surrender.

Sit down, Massimo.

- Here.
- Thanks.

And you, Massimo,

when will you visit your mum?

Enrico told me she lives in NewYork.

At Christmas.

NewYork is full of lights
at Christmas.

"In spite of the 4-0 win atAscoli

Torino FC still lives alongside a ghost:

the ghost of the Grande Torino team.

After 43 years, no one makes
a direct comparison any more, but..."

ROME 1992

But now let's go back to Marassi
and enjoy the Genoa-NapoIi match.

Thanks for Iistening.

Without Signorini, now disquaIified,
and with Fiorin repIacing Eranio...

Genoa's finding it hard to control
the game, because NapoIi's midfieIders,

both agile and solid,
are putting the pressure on...

Are we together or not?

This is you,
the man who's scared offalling,

always in the corner.

You never risk saying
anything stupid!

Why don't you go live in a cave?

Hi, what are you doing?
Are you at the paper?

- Hi, I'm with Agnese, we're going...
- Come right away.

Where? Right away...
where are you?

Can't you imagine?
There's a poker game at Athos' house.

- Him?
- Yes, him.

He keeps raising the stake,
he's thrashing us.

l told him about you,
he wants to meet you.

- He wants to meet me?
- Hurry!

I'm on my way.

Pull over, please.
I'll take a taxi.

- Don't worry, I'll see you in an hour.
- You don't know where we're going.

Three aces...


The sums are easily done:
you're 20 million lire down.

- Have a seat.
- Thank you.

AppIause in a bar in ViaIe Trastevere,
appIause at Fiumicino airport...

You're no good at bluffing,
your face says it all.

And you want to be an actor.

Will you cover it?


More post-dated cheques?

Hi, Massimo.


- What's happened?
- The usual bastard won't pay up.

- Where'sAthos?
- He's coming.

Let's bring an end
to this pitiful scene.

I don't understand why you come
to play ifyou're broke.

Okay, I'll cover his debt,
after all, it's mostly with me.

- Hello, nice to meet you.
- Same here.

See you.

Come with me.

Do you like them?

Silly question.

Please, sit down.

Goodnight, president.

Goodnight, president.
Bye, Massimo.

- Bye.
- I'll see you at the paper.

Poker's great, but...

ifwinning's the same as losing,
what's the point?

That's why I like playing with
those four fools you saw earlier,

because they're men who drink,
who smoke

and who can't afford to lose.

Whereas I could lose
a billion lire...

and it'd make no difference.

Today the Stock Market lost
300 billion, up in smoke,

but it'd never existed.

Small change exists though,

brass nickels, 1 ,000 lire notes...

- Do you have a 1 ,000 lire?
- Yes.

I don't have a wallet,
it weighs me down.

There, you see these? It's real.

It smells, it rustles...

It's been handled,

it's full of germs,
at the bar I buy a coffee...

and I get change.

I order it from the barman,
or I don't,

and suddenly I look out
at the street

and put my hand in my pocket.

Then I drink my coffee,

with sugar or sweetener,
I couldn't care less...

and a scent passes by.

The toilet.

A photo of the dead father,


I jump from thought to thought,
I've lost you.

Money doesn't interest you, right?
You're not ambitious.

No, I'm not ambitious...

I'm very ambitious.

That's why I rushed here.

I've no notebook, I won't ask
any questions, don't worry.

You want to know how
I earned so much?

Because I was prepared to lose.

To lose everything,
at any moment,


At night I wake up...
I sleep very little.

I don't take sleeping pills.

And in the dark, I think.

The first thought I have is...

"What shall I sell?
What shall I buy?" It's a game.

Then I imagine some
absurd transactions.

Then, the next day,

when I give the order to sell
or to buy,

everyone at the Stock Exchange
copies what I do.

You know the Pied Piper?

They all drowned, the rats!

But what happened to the children
from that story?

It's a gamble.

You know what I'm talking about,
football is a gamble too.

- I read your articles, I like them.
- Thank you.

A concise style, no rhetoric...

I'd have all poets killed.

Yet you don't give a damn
about football, admit it.

No, that's not true,
I really love football,

like my father and grandfather did...

A good football match,
where everyone gives their all...

It's a load of nonsense.

You're an orphan, right?


yes, I was.

Why, how's that relevant?

You see, a happy man will never
achieve anything in life.

Without a healthy dose of hatred...

Do you want to write my life story?

No, my sister, every time
the bell rings she says "uh-oh".

Wait here for me.

Good evening.

- Good evening.
- Are you Mr. Giovanni Athos?


We have to inform you that
we have a warrant for your arrest.

You need to come with us.

All right.

Can I go and get ready?

- Go ahead.
- Come in.

Thank you.

- Who are you?
- Afriend.

Take him away.
You go into the other room.

Sir, it's Massimo,
sorry to call so late.

I'm at PresidentAthos's home.

What's up?

- I think he's shot himself.
- What? Come straight back!

No, I'm here, I can't leave,
they said I have to stay here.

l'll stop the newspaper,
write an article, in half an hour.

What shall I write?

I know nothing about him,
only what everyone knows.

Who gives a damn,
that's even better!

Describe everything you saw
in detail.

Hurry, before
the magistrate arrives!

You've witnessed the suicide of
a star protagonist, don't you see?

Start writing, come on,
this is your goIden opportunity!

All right, we'll speak later.


Hold it.


- Where are we going?
- I don't know, we'll find out.

- What do you mean?
- Don't you like living dangerously?

- Slow, slow...
- Go, go!

Massimo, are you there?
Pick the phone up.

Where have you got to?
Let's go out for dinner tonight. Bye.

Hi, it's me Bob.
Are you there yet?

The editor wants to taIk to you.
Call me back.

Massimo, it's your auntie.

I've caIIed you Iots,
but you never pick up.

l want to know
if you got the parceI I sent you.

It's just an oId box of matches

but your uncIe wanted you
to have them.

He kept them for many years,
they were your mother's.

l'm sorry, l have to hang up,
I get emotionaI too easiIy. Bye.

- FatebenefrateIIi HospitaI.
- Can I speak to a doctor, please?

HoId the Iine, pIease.

- Emergency Room.
- I'd like to speak to a doctor, please.

I'II put you through.

- Hello?
- Please, I'm dying.

You're dying?
Can you expIain? How do you feeI?

I don't know, I feel terrible.

- Can you send someone?
- Where does it hurt?

I can't breathe.

My heart hurts.

It's about to explode,
it feels like it's going to explode.

Any other symptoms?
Are you sweating?


I feel a weight on my chest,

I'm struggling to breathe

and I'm shaking like mad.

I'm scared.

- About what?
- Of dying.

I feel like I'm about to die.

My heart's racing,

I'm experiencing
paroxysmal tachycardia.

CaIm down, it's a panic attack.

- How do you know?
- l'm a doctor.

- Where are you?
- At home.

Are you near a window or a mirror?

A mirror...

Go to the mirror
and breathe onto it.


The mirror.

You see? It's misting up.


Let me hear how you're breathing.

Keep breathing deepIy.


Now sit down.

- Are you sitting down?
- Yes.

- How are you feeIing?
- Not great.

I called the cardiologist an hour ago,
he's still not arrived.

- Let's wait.
- This shift rota has to change.

I've done three nights on the trot.

Okay, shall we have a coffee?

- Yes.
- Are you paying?

Excuse me.


I think I spoke to you on the phone,
not long ago.

Yes, you're experiencing
paroxysmal tachycardia.

Come, let's do some tests.

Now sit up.

Look at the light.

Keep your head still.

Keep still.

- Can I get dressed?
- Yes.

- Have you had panic attacks before?
- No.

It's the first time,
that's why I was scared.

It felt like my heart was about
to explode.

My mum died like that,
from a sudden heart attack.

- Did she have heart problems?
- No, not that I know of.

But she'd had surgery
for breast cancer.

The two things aren't related.

- How old was she?
- 38.

At that age,
with no history of heart disease...

And what do you mean by
a "sudden heart attack"?

I don't know,
it's what my father told me.

Exactly, those are things people say.

You really like to reassure
your patients.

I prefer to tell them the truth.

Mine was just a thought,

based on statistics.

Have you asked yourself why
you're experiencing these attacks?

No, I told you, it's the first time.

When I get anxious I've always
been able to control it.

As a kid, after my mother died,
I also had someone who helped me,

who gave me advice.

Sometimes they were actual orders.

He was an authoritarian type.

- Your father?
- No.

So who then, a friend?

Sort of, yes. A true friend,
even though he didn't actually exist.

- Belfagor.
- Belfagor?

Do you know him?

Of course, what kid didn't know
about him? He was scary.

My mother was totally mesmerized
by him,

and so was I.

He looked evil, but in actual fact...

he really helped me,
he protected me.

- From what?
- From everything.

From solitude,
from fear, from sorrow.

He stopped me from going mad.

I always obeyed,
with no resistance,

I did whatever he asked me to do.

And then?

And then nothing, I learnt
how to defend myself, I grew up.

Ifyou experience another attack,
now you know what it is,

don't panic,

forget about Belfagor.

Thank you.

- So I don't need to take anything?
- No, you don't need medication.

At least not for now.

Ifyou feel unwell again,

phone a friend,
someone close to you.

Could that person be you?

Mum, what are we going
to do now?

Are you still here?

I told you the truth earlier.

I was honest.

So you trust me then.

Where are we going?

I'm going to sleep, goodnight.

The presumed age of the universe
has progressively increased.

It's been discovered that Earth
isn't at the centre of the universe

but that it's only one
of the many entities that inhabit it

and that its life derives from
the light of a star,

the sun.

Light is life.

What do we say
when someone is born?

That he's come to life.

Knock, knock, you come to life too.

You don't care about me.


the theories that try to explain
the origin of the universe

are numerous

and they all deserve respect,

even just for the effort put in
by those who study them...

- Do you need the toilet?
- No, I have a question.

Go ahead.


What was there before?

I told you, the Earth's formation
took place thousands of years ago...

Yes, but before that,
before the start of the universe.

You mean even before then?

But this takes us from science
into philosophy,

we enter the field of faith.

- And so?
- What do you think there was?

There was God before everything,
only God, nothing else.

He's the creator of the universe.

And even if he didn't exist,
he'd still be there.

He has to be,
to give meaning to our existence.

It's the only hope,

the only light.

Does that light exist
for the dead too?

They'll see the light.

At the end of the world...

we'll all see it,
the living and the dead.


Goodbye, father.

Let's go.

Goodbye, father.

Father, I want to know.

- Know what?
- The answer.

The only way to get an answer is
to keep asking the question.

Don't ever stop asking.

But you, Massimo,
you ask all these questions,

do you pray?

Defend your faith.

Goodbye, father.

The body of Christ.

- The body of Christ.
- Amen.

Excuse me.

- The body of Christ.
- Amen.

What are you doing?

Why are you here at his time?

The school has been closed
for hours.

And what's the point in turning on
all these lights?

Answer right away,
don't prepare a lie.

The church was too dark,
it needs to be bathed in light.

- It's the temple of faith.
- Leave faith out of it, young man.

- You should be at home now.
- But God is light.

So you think that the lights
of this church

can recreate the light of the kingdom
of God?

I'm trying to do everything I can,
father, to reach heaven.

And plus,

I've paid.

You want to embrace your mother
again, I know.

I can understand,

but why do you tell your friends
that your mother is alive?

Of course she's alive, life is eternal
because our souls are immortal.

- You taught me that.
- Don't try to confuse matters.

You've not talked of heaven
to your friends, but of this world.

Come, sit down.

Your lie...

is harmless for those who hear it,

but not for you.

Your mother is dead.

That's where you need
to start from.

Mourn her, ifyou so wish,
from morning till night,

what matters is that you react
to the pain,

don't be a victim.

- If she were still here...
- If...

"If" is the mark of failure.

In this life it's "despite"
that makes you succeed.

Despite the worst tragedies,
despite the injustices suffered,

despite your mother being dead.

Be strong.

Try to be strong.

What are you doing?


I don't have any homework
for tomorrow.

Take your feet off the bed.

What's the matter?

Did you actually see mum die?


How did she die? Do you know?


That night...

I woke up all of a sudden
and your mum wasn't in bed.

Outside it was snowing, it was cold.

I found her here in your room,
she was tucking you in.

I felt reassured
and I went back to bed.

Your mum wanted
to say goodbye to you,

but without waking you.

Don't you remember anything?


I went back to bed
and I fell asleep.

She must've felt ill right here,
in your room.

Maybe she was struggling to breathe
because she left her dressing gown here

but she didn't call out,

she didn't call out...

so she wouldn't wake anyone because
other people were important to her,

she always put them first.

I found her on the floor
in the corridor.

A sudden heart attack.

Yes, the operation had left her weak,
the medication...

Her heart couldn't cope.

But she didn't want to abandon us.

It was like...

she was more worried about us
than about herself.

Come on, be strong.

Don't cry.

TURIN 1995

Let us pray.

God, hear the prayer

offered by the community of believers
for the resurrection of the Lord

and grant us the blessed hope

that along with our departed brothers,
we shall rise again in Christ.

We ask you this through Christ,
our Lord. Amen.

Eternal rest grant unto them, O Lord.
Let perpetual light shine upon them.

May they rest in peace. Amen.

I'm sorry I'm late.

It's all right.

- I've not been here for a long time.
- Neither have I.

It must be twenty years.

She brought me here.


She's restored my enthusiasm.

This is Anita,
this is my son, Massimo.

Nice to meet you.

- Excuse me, I'll go.
- Go ahead.

I'll join you.

Do you want to marry her?

- Why do you ask?
- No reason, just tell me.

- Do you want to marry her?
- If I did, would you mind?

Not at all, and anyway, I don't think
you need my approval.

If you're happy, I'm happy.

- In fact, I'm quite envious.
- Stop kidding.

She's thirty years younger than me.

- If you're worried about your rights...
- What rights?

No, they're protected.

The house is yours,
whatever happens, it's yours.

- You don't need to worry.
- Please.

And of course,
all your mother's things

will go to you.


I want you to have this.

Why the rush?

- And why here?
- Where else?

We never see each other, Massimo.

Come on, take it.

Go on.


I know how much you suffered.

I should've done more.

Shall we talk about something else?

That's all we've done all our lives.

She was so beautiful.

She was so... so full of joy.

You don't know how much
I loved her.

The way she laughed...

Do you remember how she laughed?

Let's end it, the column is dead.

The proof is the number of letters
that arrive, very few.

Let's end the column then. Amen.
I'll go fishing.

Could it be because your answers
have become too harsh?

You're so pessimistic.
You're depressed, Cavalieri.

I have a letter here,
I'll read it to you.

It's not an exception, but at least
it talks of a real emotion,


"I wrote this letter
thinking of my mother

and the feelings I have for her.

I don't think my mother's
ever loved anyone,

she's deceived everyone,

so much so that they consider her
to be perfect,

an ever-present caring mother,

whereas in fact she's totally absent,
but only I'm aware of that

and I hate her.

Yes, I hate her

because hatred is the only emotion
she's conveyed to me.

If she'd died sooner,
when I was a kid,

I'd have been left with the memory
of an immense love,

but no, I want to kill her
with my own hands.

Then I hate myself,
I loathe having these thoughts.

She is my mother,

and yes, you only have one mother.

Signed: Simon."

No, Si-moron.

In all honesty,

you know what I should say to him?

Dear Simon, take it easy
and do a good deed,

kill your mother
then shoot yourself in the head,

good riddance to you both.

Can I answer like that to a moron
who's suffering?

No, I can't.

And more importantly, I mustn't.

So I raise the white flag.

I surrender!


I'm going fishing!

I'm out of here!

Okay, gentlemen,
let's get back to work.

- Massimo?
- Yes.

- Can I have a quick word?
- Of course.

Listen, I have an idea.

Why don't you try writing a reply
to that letter?

Me? Why?

Well, you write well, you're direct,
without being over-sentimental...

Yes, but emotions aren't
my strong point.


I know how relevant
this topic is to you,

about your mother...

about how you lost her, as a kid.

I had just started working here,
I was on the news desk,

and the editor...

Come on, listen, write whatever
you want,

whatever comes to your mind.

I imagine you suffered,
when your mother died,

you must've shed many tears...
so use them, these tears.

Use them, don't be ashamed.

And don't re-read it.

Dear Simon, I'm in no position
to give you any expert advice,

but I can teII you one thing,
which I'm certainIy not proud of.

I Iost my mother, as a kid.

l was 9 when she died.

It was a huge bIow, I feIt panic.

I couIdn't beIieve she was gone.

Every time I came home I thought
she would be there,

I thought I'd find her there,
in the kitchen, with the radio on.

Every night I'd open my eyes
in the dark

certain I'd see her sitting on my bed.

For me she wasn't dead, l told
my friends she Iived in America.

Then as I grew up I stopped
taIking and thinking about her.

l didn't want to suffer.

Those who loved me had gone
and I didn't want to Iove anyone,

not out of revenge,
but in order to survive.

l'm able to write about it now

because l know that sooner or later
the dreaded sorrow returns

and you have to accept it.

I accepted that it was my fate
to lose her, simple as that.

If I'm replying to you in this way,

dear Simon,

it's for one reason alone,

so that you can understand
the difference.

Even though you feel hostility
towards your mother,

even though you harbour resentment
towards her,

I can tell you that you're incredibly
lucky to have a mother,

to have her with you,
your mother is alive.

To know she exists, to come home
and say: "Mum, are you here?"

and feel relief when she replies.

I was told

that the last thing my mother did,
the night she passed away,

was to come into my bedroom
and tuck me in.

I was asleep, I didn't notice.

Sweet dreams.

Perhaps your mother too, dear Simon,

was affectionate towards you,
and loving, but you didn't notice,

or you didn't understand
or you've simply forgotten.

Very often love is expressed
in a hidden, invisible way,

we run the risk of only remembering
negative things.

But even if you've never given
your mother a hug,

a smile or a caress,

just imagine, Simon, if without
even closing the newspaper,

you were to run and give her a hug,
what would you have to lose?

It certainly wouldn't make
your situation any worse,

and who knows,
by giving her a hug,

you may see in your mother's face
an expression of surprise,

or a longing, or a tear.

And so go, Simon, run to her,

with open arms.

What are we supposed to do now,
hug each other?


Something's arrived for you.


Massimo, you did a great job!


You're famous.

Massimo, can I have a word?

- Hi.
- Hi.

- Hello?
- Massimo dearest!

I wanted to congratuIate you,
you really surprised me.

Not even in my goIden years
couId I have soId my souI Iike that.

- Cavalieri, listen...
- No, I wanted to teII you.

You'II go reaIIy far!

Anyone eIse in your position
wouId've given up

but you've even managed to overcome
the loss of your mother

in order to pIease the readers,

going public with
your goddamn sorrow.

You know something,
dear Massimo?

As far as sad stories go...
yours tops the lot!


- Yes.
- lt's Elisa.

Shit! Goddammit...

I can't see you all,
try going further back, please.

Look happy, come on!


Lady in the hat,
stand in the middle.

Try not to cover anyone's face.

Smile and look happy,

Try not to get in anyone's way,
that's great.

All done, thanks!

And now for the first dance,
a waltz!

You got here at last.

I got lost.

At a certain point
the road ended...

- It's not easy to get here.
- I found that out.

I walked for a bit,
I heard voices, the music...

and then I found the house.

But I tripped up and got
an electric shock from a wire.

It's to keep wild boars out,
but it's not dangerous.

What's this party for?

It's my grandparents'
60th anniversary.

- 60 years of marriage?
- Yes.

We've come from all over the world:
from France, Spain, Argentina...

children, grandchildren...
we're all here.

It's the first time,
and maybe even the last!

Elisa, my dear, shall we dance?
Let's dance this waltz?

- Mr. Massimo, welcome.
- Thank you.

- What should I call you? Mr...?
- Massimo is fine.

Can I talk to you?

I'm so lucky...

- Sorry for bothering you.
- No, it's fine.

- I'm so excited to meet you.
- That's all right.

- I'm being serious, really.
- I believe you.

Your letter, I really liked it.

- Thanks.
- I cried!

Your enthusiasm...
your simple truths are so moving.

My life's not been easy either,
I've had some tough times...

I'm sorry.

my husband's affairs,

the financial disasters...
I've suffered many disappointments.

You can imagine what I thought of
during those moments, you know.

You know, you can understand.

Immense sorrow,

that's all I could think of.

Even a mother can be
dreadfully selfish.

But I had my children to think of,
they stopped me,

with their constant presence.

So I stopped having dark thoughts.

And your letter too, which helped me
to understand many things.

Thank you.

Like the pain a child can feel
when he loses his mother.

I got through it,

but... I risked losing my life.

Auntie, this is a party!

Yes, I was just saying how much
I appreciate his sensibility.

I was complimenting him
on his letter.

What about you,
did you like my letter?

- Did you like it?
- Yes.

Of course!
Come on, let's dance.

No, no, I can't dance...


Godmother, hello.

Sorry, it's very late,
I'm really sorry.

Has something happened?

No, I'm emptying the house
and I thought it'd be easier.

I'm making a real mess.

Can you come?

Come where, Massimo?
At this time?

To the house, please.

- Okay, I'm coming.
- Thanks.


- Massimo. Hi, how are you?
- Fine.

- What's going on?
- Nothing, come in.

What a mess... what...

Are you okay?

Yes, I'm getting rid of everything.


- It's late, Massimo.
- Yes, I'm sorry.

- It's two in the morning.
- Look.

While I waited for you, I looked
at her "Planet and Stars" album.

- Do you want some water?
- No.

You can have it, if you like.

I intend to throw everything out.

I want to burn it all.

- Don't act crazy, you're not.
- I'm not acting crazy, but...


I'm now five years older than her.

That really freaks me out.

And I'll keep getting older.

How did my mother die?

Won't you answer me?

What do you mean?

You're still not answering me.

- You know.
- You have to tell me.

I want to hear it from you.


"Today at dawn a boy's mother,
suffering from a serious illness,

killed herself by jumping out
of a window. She died instantly."

"Young Massimo woke up,

but no one had the courage
to tell him his mother was dead."

Why didn't you tell me?

I thought you knew,

that your father had told you
or that you'd worked it out.

During these thirty years...

A sudden heart attack!

How could you do that to me?

Working it out isn't the same.

I can understand if you're ten, but...
when you're twenty?

Or thirty?

No one thought of taking me to one side
to tell me the truth.

No one.

My father continued telling me bullshit
on his death bed,

he was no Napoleon...

A sudden heart attack!

It's my fault alone.

I'm an idiot, a coward.

I didn't understand,
I didn't want to.

I've always known the truth.

Mum didn't give a damn
about anyone,

not even about me.

In fact, least of all about me.

She was suffering, Massimo,
you can't imagine how much.

It takes courage to die like that,
a lot of courage.

- So much despair...
- What?


It takes more courage to raise a child
than to jump out of a window.

Your mother's illness terrified her,
she thought the doctors were lying.

- She was obsessed by her pain.
- So was she mad?

Then she should've gassed us all.

- Stop it, she loved you even though...
- Enough, enough!

Enough, please.

So many wasted tears.

Let her go.


24, 25.

I'm coming!


Mum, this isn't fun anymore.


Mum, where are you?

Mum, enough!


Mum, where are you?
Mum! Mum!


- Mum...
- Honey, I'm here.

I was playing a trick on you.

I was in here,
do you want to see? In here.

Do you want to go in?


- Shall we stay in here?
- Yes.