The Mass Is Over

Writer-director-actor Nanni Moretti is one of the brightest stars in contemporary Italian comedy, and, in the opinion of many European critics, the most interesting Italian director to have come along in years. This 1985 feature is less formally and thematically audacious than his subsequent Palombella rossa, about the political and ideological soul-searching of an Italian communist water-polo player, but it still gives one some idea of what makes Moretti distinctive: here he’s a former 60s radical converted to the priesthood who bumbles his way through well-intentioned encounters with parishioners that usually end in mutual incomprehension. 96 min. (JR)

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