Using a championship soccer match as a device to collect a scattered bunch of Roman characters, “Final Stage” attempts a sweeping panorama of relationship ills with rather trite results. Stage helmer Ivano De Matteo, making his feature directing bow, puts too many irons in the fire to make any of the mini-stories insightful enough to capture attention. What’s left is a little like surfing TV, which along with video is pic’s most probable outlet. The soccer refrain may give it a slight edge with sporty viewers.
A 16-year-old pretty baby (Victoria Larchenko), hungry for experience, is victimized by a man (De Matteo) she meets casually. A famous soccer referee (Stefano Santospago) with personal problems throws in the towel. A hospital orderly (Manrico Gammarota) transfers his frustrated sports ambitions to his reluctant young son. Pic’s resolutely two-dimensional characters are easily identifiable as types, underlined by theatrical costumes and makeup. Two well-known actors — Franco Nero as the suffocating father of a son who wants to go his own way, and Valerio Mastrandrea as a hip lawyer unable to accept his brother’s homosexuality — stand out in a sea of ensemble perfs.