Film review: Gli Zii by Gerard Monaco

Two very rough Italian brothers live quietly in a house in the mountain, worshiping their beautiful nun sister. One day their peaceful life changes when they find a baby on their doorstep. The child is the daughter of their sister who, ashamed, has fled the convent and has disappeared. In a letter, she asks her brothers to keep innocence of her little girl forever. 17 years later, the guys have no choice but to 'take care' of the suitors of their niece.

This is The Uncles, the third short film directed by British actor Gerard Monaco, a nice comedy full of black humor and where a word is barely not pronounced. Yes, The Uncles is a silent film (we only hear the voice of the sister reading the letter). This technique works but sometimes, the film becomes a ridiculous pantomime. The performances– even those of wellknown actors Sidney Kean and Peter Oliver, playing the uncles - are, indeed, too forced at times.

Despite the simplicity of the story and its tenderness, The Uncles feels like something we have seen thousands of times in cinema, television and literature. It's a pity, because its perfect art design (set in late 50s), the spectacular music (composed by Andy Price, also producer of the film) and the experience of the actors, could have turned the movie into something more interesting and special and less like 'everything else'.

Title: Gli Zii (The Uncles)
Director: Gerard Monaco
Year: 2013
Run time: 21'58''
Country: UK

12 August 2014, by Lucía Ros Serra