Directed by Paolo Virzì
Beatrice is a blabbermouth and a so-called billionaire countess who likes to believe she’s in intimacy with world leaders. Donatella is a young quiet tattooed woman, locked in her own mystery. They are both patients of a mental institution and subject to custodial measures.
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★★★★ review by Cristiano on Letterboxd
JUST WATCH IT, if you can.
★★★½ review by Raul Marques on Letterboxd
An Italian "Thelma & Louise" meets "One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest" dramedy that would absolutely destroy at Sundance... to later in the year be justly revaluated as only fine due to being insanely uneven. Still has performances and cinematography to die for, though.
★★★★ review by Reini Urban on Letterboxd
And so this is the first film of the year which made me cry, crying for the fun and comedy, and esp. the grandious Valeria Bruni Tedeschi who is the best when playing herself. It reminded me a lot on her first film "Il est plus facile pour un chameau …", where also her mother plays her mother.
But behind all the slapstick and gags this is an extremely accurate depiction of the Italian mental institutions and their typical stories. It's one of those very rare movies which is able to depict extremely melodramatic fates with empathy, love and humor, even more with the chance to have a Bruno Tedeschi playing here, even better than a Jerry Lewis in full form. Rarely real life intersects with an movie actor that much.
★★★★★ review by bella on Letterboxd
A journey in emotional freedom and exuberance from start to finish. It's the way these women deal with dead ends - like they don't exist, like they aren't phased by them. Making the most out of nothing and living off it until you've dried it out, then onto the next nothing. They don't find hope in despair, rather they parade around in their despair and give it a new identity. Resisting labels and restrictions and jail cells and institution walls, Beatrice and Donatella are my vision of superheroes. Nothing can keep the two of them down, and the intensity they find in one another only serves to make them stronger. La Pazza Gioia blends sadness and happiness until you feel your heart beating out of your chest. How incredible it is to experience such compassionate empathy.
★★★★ review by J. on Letterboxd
Ugh this was so beautiful, I don't know what to do with all these emotions?
It's such a gentle and touching portrait not only of mental illness but also of female friendship? And it's so rare to see either, and particularly in combination. It's such a rollercoaster ride of emotion which kind of mirrors mania and depression and I don't even know how to be coherent rn.
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