Title: The Confessions
MPAA Rating: NR
Director: Roberto Andò
Starring: Toni Servillo, Daniel Auteuil, Connie Nielsen
Runtime: 1 hr 48 min
What It Is: A polished thriller that’s set in a luxury resort on the German coast, where a G8 meeting is being held with powerful economists set to authorize provisions that will severely impact the world’s economy. Director of the International Monetary Fund Daniel Rochè (Auteuil) has invited an enigmatic Italian monk Roberto Salus (Servillo) in order to hear his confession. The morning after Rochè’s after-dark divulgence, he’s found dead in his hotel room, suffocated with a plastic bag that belonged to the monk.
What We Think: Begining as a classic whodunit with Salus under suspicion, the economists and other hotel guests including wealthy author Claire Seth (Nielsen) and famous musician Michael Wintzl (Johan Heldenberg), become tangled up in the unfolding drama. Snippets of Rochè’s confession are interjected throughout as the mystery stumbles to its conclusion. Underdeveloped characters wander through a film that flirts with politics and religion but doesn’t commit to a deep discussion and ultimately falls flat.
The film’s strength lies with Maurizio Calvesi’s cinematography. From stylishly framing the lavish surroundings, to examining each character as their conscious stares back at them from precisely placed mirrors and watery reflections. Nicola Piovani’s elegant score is also a high point, the film’s plot doesn’t quite ascend to the heights of the music it’s set to.
Our Grade: C, Visually impressive with a classy score, but lacking character substance despite a solid cast. The Confessions is overly cluttered and fails to build to its finale. Running out of steam but just about managing to touch upon some thought-provoking subject matter, with the help of Servillo’s calm and charismatic lead performance.