Let Yourself Go is directed by Francesco Amato, who tries his hand at a romantic comedy involving a therapist and personal trainer meeting at a crossroads between both their lives. While the film shows signs of life in short moments, the majority of this film runs out of breath before we’re into the homestretch.
Toni Servillo plays Elia, a Jewish therapist in Rome who’s tired of the same patients failing to get over their issues. We’re quickly introduced to his ex-wife, Giovanna (Carla Signoris), who lives next door. She has already moved on from Elia, but he cannot say the same. Elia is overprotective, always wondering where and who she’s going to eat dinner with. After a brief doctor’s visit, he’s told that he must lose weight or risk disease. Elia reacts lazily and with an uninspired approach, until he meets his Spanish personal trainer Claudia (Verónica Echegui).
The film is a comedy at heart and plays to the romantic tropes we’re used to seeing time and time again. Woman and man are opposites, opposites attract, man continues shutting himself off internally and they both get into an unfortunate situation together. There’s a lack of unique personality to this film, which weighs down the story by the second act. The lack of jokes — or even quality comedic sequences — also bogs down Let Yourself Go.
Actress Verónica Echegui’s character is spunky and full of life, making her the center of attention with every scene she’s a part of. The film thrives when she’s front and center, when clearly the script is pandering to Elia and trying to use physical humor more often than not to remind us that, yes, this is supposed to be funny. But the laughs are few and far between, making me simply bored in moments.
What would’ve helped Amato’s film is if he allowed scenes to marinate. Too often do moments feel fleeting and unrewarding. There’s no substance when the big reveal happens during the climax, and there’s no real reason to feel anything for Claudia and Elia. Letting the tension marinate would have produced a better connection with me and the film.
This is surely a lighter comedy, even if there’s swearing every now and then. However, with any light comedy comes predictability, which is the unfortunate case here. Every consequence is too convenient and situations happen without much precedence. When the film attempts to get even a tad bit clever with its antagonist, Ettore (Luca Marinelli), it’s another uninspired effort, much like the actions of Elia himself.
Actor Toni Servillo surely can conduct himself just fine in moments alongside Echegui, but Let Yourself Go hardly lingered in my mind once the credits ran. This is a great hour and a half to spend if you’re watching it, say, on an airplane, but while there’s other Italian cinema to please the moviegoer inside you, this comedy can probably take a backseat.
I was given a chance to see this film early for purposes of this review thanks to Menemsha Films and Jan Mitchell & Associates. ❤
Let Yourself Go opens in South Florida on March 2 in the following theaters:
The Last Picture Show/Tamarac , Savor Cinema – Fort Lauderdale
Cinema Paradiso – Hollywood
Living Room Theaters, Regal Shadowood, Movies of Delray, Movies of Lake Worth – Palm Beach County
AMC Aventura – Aventura