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John Turturro

A filmmaker juggles life and work in the richly rewarding 'Mia Madre'

A filmmaker juggles life and work in the richly rewarding 'Mia Madre'

While concerned cineastes bemoan the lack of women behind the camera, Italian writer/director Nanni Moretti makes one his autobiographical avatar in “Mia Madre,” about an emotionally fraying filmmaker (Margherita Buy) dealing with crises professional and personal, namely a problem-beset movie shoot and the declining health of her mother (Giulia Lazzarini), a beloved Latin teacher. (Moretti’s own mother passed during the filming of one of his movies.)

This quietly wise, funny and openly sentimental mix of a gentler “8 ½” (there are dreams not readily recognizable as such) and an illness drama is tinged with the kind of honest sadness and comic...

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