Respiro (2003) - Rotten Tomatoes

Respiro (2003)



Critic Consensus: A sweet, but slight picture filled with beautiful people and locations.

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Movie Info

Thirteen-year-old Pasquale is the head of a small band of children who hunt birds in their spare time, and defend "their" territory from rival gangs. Like most of his fellow Lampedusans, Pasquale spends his evenings on Via Roma, the main street that he and his mates use as a racetrack for performing acrobatic stunts with their Vespas. Pasquale's one acknowledged boss is his father, Pietro, a generous but violent man who is both loved and feared. His mother, Grazia, is considered to be extravagant by the rest of her family. She refuses to be dominated, however that is not an advantage in Lampedusa where everyone always keeps an eye on what she's doing. Pasquale is ashamed of his mother being different from the other mothers, but defends and protects her from the growing pressure from her peers and her husband, as everyone wants to take her to a mental hospital in Milan, where they think she can get cured.


Muzzi Loffredo
as Grandmother
Elio Germano
as Pier-Luigi
Avy Marciano
as Olivier
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Critic Reviews for Respiro

All Critics (84) | Top Critics (28)

A sad, slight film but with a sweet, smooth finish that makes you feel richer for having watched and absorbed and felt.

September 26, 2003
Orlando Sentinel
Top Critic

A small, sensual and unforgettable Italian drama that transports us to a place wonderfully exotic yet strangely familiar.

August 8, 2003
Detroit Free Press
Top Critic

A beautifully scenic but languid character study that could use a shot of adrenalin and a more straightforward story line.

July 19, 2003
Arizona Republic
Top Critic

A quietly disarming drama by Emanuele Crialese that tugs at family ties and calls into question the conventional definition of 'normal.'

Full Review… | July 5, 2003
Toronto Star
Top Critic

Somewhere along the way, Respiro just seems to run out of breath.

Full Review… | July 4, 2003
Globe and Mail
Top Critic

Valeria Golino proves she can act as good as she looks.

July 4, 2003
Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Respiro

I'd been reluctant to see this because of my mistaken impression that it was yet another film making light of mental illness, or implying that sufferers have some special insight or powers that make it all worthwhile. I'm glad to admit I was wrong! When I finally did see it, I was awestruck at its sensitive portrait of the family. Highly recommended.

liz b
liz b

Such a contrast here from the advertisements I saw for this film while in Europe... I don't think Valerino Golino had a smile that wide on her face the entire movie. This advertisement does not at all portray the inner demons that the lead heroine experienced throughout the development of the story... ah! We Americans so crave positive, feel-good romanticism... haha, I just reviewed the ad and not the movie.

Rachel Baker
Rachel Baker

The story is confusing at times but still a good one to watch if you love the language and scenery of Southern Italia.

Christina Battisti-Ortiz
Christina Battisti-Ortiz

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