The Cantone clan are cinema's latest in a long line of dysfunctional broods gathering at the family home for special occasions, only to fray already precious relationships to breaking point when bombshells are dropped at the dinner table. The occasion here is patriarch Vincenzo (Ennio Fantastichini), passing over the reigns of his pasta manufacturers to his two sons whilst embarking on a merger with an associate, which will bring two local families together and save their dwindling fortune. The night before this is formally announced, younger brother Tommaso (Riccardo Scamarcio), home from studying in Rome, confesses to his brother Antonio (Alessandro Preziosi), already an assistant manager at the factory, that he is studying literature, not business, that he wants to write a novel and is gay. Knowing how his father will react, Tommaso plans to come out in order to get kicked out, so that he can escape the burden of filial expectation and pursue his literary aspirations. Just as Tommaso is awkwardly tip-toeing around the big reveal, his brother interrupts him and steals his thunder to tell all those assembled that he is gay also and in love with one of the factory workers. A disgraced Vincenzo then demands his favourite son and heir leave the house and collapses immediately thereafter. Believing any further revelations might be enough to kill his already fragile father and with his family now teetering dangerously on the brink of self-implosion as they scramble to preserve their public image (never mind the private one of alcoholism, diabetes and homophobia), Tommaso bottles the truth, choosing to stay behind and carry on as his father intended.
Riccardo Scamarcio, Nicole Grimaudo, Alessandro Preziosi