In his warm and witty follow-up to the 2010 sleeper hit Mid-August Lunch, writer-director-actor Gianni Di Gregorio has created another sparkling comedy—this time with a dash of the bittersweet. In The Salt of Life, Gianni plays a middle-aged retiree who has become invisible to all distaff Romans, regardless of age or relation. He contends with an aristocratic, spendthrift mother; a wife who is more patronizing friend than romantic partner; a daughter with a slacker boyfriend whom Gianni unwillingly befriends; and a wild young neighbor who sees him merely as her dog walker. Watching his “codger” friends snare beautiful younger women on the sun-kissed cobblestones of Trastevere, Gianni tries his polite, utterly gracious best to generate some kind of extracurricular love life—with both hilarious and poignant results.
Directed by Gianni Di Gregorio; Italian w/ English subtitles; 1 hr 30 mins; not rated