It's been 18 years since TrustMovies has seen the origi-
nal Everybody's Fine, co-writer/dir-
ector Giuseppi Tornatore's follow
-up to his wildly successful Cinema Paradiso. I remem-
ber enjoying the film and being moved and amused by it, yet it seemed notic-
eably less "special" than the filmmaker's earlier success. Ah: the curse of the sophomore effort,
many of us decided at the time. I suspect now that the film holds up better than some of us may remember because its American remake, coming nearly two decades later and despite a rather clunky scenario that spells things out when it should simply let them unfold -- the new EVERYBODY'S FINE -- directed by Kirk Jones (Waking Ned Devine, and the under-rated, little-seen Nanny McPhee) has many good moments along the way, and, yes, some others that should make you grimace.
|Jones has adapted his screenplay from the original (credited to Massimo De Rita, Tonino Guerra and Signore Tornatore) and he appears to have stuck pretty closely to it, while setting his lead char-|
acter's adventures in the USA rather than Italy. What this Everyman discovers -- about his kids and himself -- as he visits first one child then another is what leads the film to its happy/sad, feel-good
Early on the De Niro character imagines his children's present lives while still seeing them in his own mind as young kids. This "trick" is repeated often enough to become tiresome and yet there are mo-
ments along the way when it packs a punch. What it means to be a "success" in the eyes of your parents and how this effects your adult life is always a theme worth exploring, as are the inevitable disappointments inherent in the lives of adults of whatever age.