This Night Is Still Ours

Cringe-worthy racial stereotypes are sent up, but then pandered to, in the genial but weak romantic comedy "This Night Is Still Ours."

With:
With: Nicolas Vaporidis, Valentina Izumi, Massimiliano Bruno, Ilaria Spada, Maurizio Mattioli, Franco Califano, Paola Tiziana Cruciani, Hal Yamanouchi, Taiyo Yamanouchi, Zhang Xu, John Yat Liu, Nishino Massatosi, Shi Yang, Luca Angeletti, Ettore Bassi, Giovanni Floris, Michele La Ginestra, Francesco Pannofino.

Cringe-worthy racial stereotypes are sent up, but then pandered to, in the genial but weak romantic comedy “This Night Is Still Ours.” Blandly titled effort by writer-helmers Paolo Genovese and Luca Miniero links an Italian guy and an assimilated Chinese girl, offering occasional sparks of laughter along with appealing leads. However, use of Japanese actors in Chinese roles reps one of pic’s many blind spots. Italy’s painfully slow rate of integration partly explains bad-taste gaffes, though insensitivity can’t be blamed for the lackluster editing. Teen idol Nicolas Vaporidis has ensured strong local B.O since Mar. 21 opening.

Undertakers Massimo (Vaporidis) and Andrea (Massimiliano Bruno) have a band, but blinged-out music impresario Cicchilitti (Franco Califano) tells them they need a Chinese chantoosie to score a contract. They think they’ve found a frontwoman after overhearing Jing (Valentina Izumi) singing, but she’s not interested. So Andrea suggests Massimo woos her until she weakens. Jing has her own game, pretending to pursue the romance to avoid an arranged marriage to a mainland Chinese. Pic begins well but then resorts to milking laughs from mispronunciations and Chinese noodles. Decent pop soundtrack is unimaginatively used.

This Night Is Still Ours

Italy

Production: A Buena Vista Intl. Italy release of a Buena Vista Intl. presentation of an Italian Intl. Film, Walt Disney Co. Italia production. Produced by Fulvio Lucisano, Federica Lucisano. Executive producers, Salvatore Morello, Giulio Steve. Directed by Paolo Genovese, Luca Miniero. Screenplay, Genovese, Miniero, Fausto Brizzi, Marco Martani, Massimiliano Bruno, Gianfranco Giagni, Chiara Laudani, Xiang Yang Li.

Crew: Camera (color), Gianfilippo Corticelli; editor, Alessandro Lucidi; music, Daniele Silvestri, Maurizio Filardo; production designer, Emita Frigato; costume designer, Cristina Francioni. Reviewed at Cinema Reale, Rome, March 30, 2008. Original title: Questa notte e ancora nostra. Italian, Mandarin dialogue. Running time: 99 MIN.

With: With: Nicolas Vaporidis, Valentina Izumi, Massimiliano Bruno, Ilaria Spada, Maurizio Mattioli, Franco Califano, Paola Tiziana Cruciani, Hal Yamanouchi, Taiyo Yamanouchi, Zhang Xu, John Yat Liu, Nishino Massatosi, Shi Yang, Luca Angeletti, Ettore Bassi, Giovanni Floris, Michele La Ginestra, Francesco Pannofino.

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