Fans of quirky, warm and funny Italian films will very likely enjoy this offering, Agata and the Storm. It takes a bit of effort to follow, because the film uses many of the devices that I have come to expect and love in European films -- slightly kooky characters with wild wardrobes; bizarre coincidences that can be a bit hard to believe; freakish plot twists; and a fair amount of ambiguity.
So, all in all I loved this film! Set in Genoa and the Po Valley, there is a bit of interesting scenery for those of us who like to see some of Italy in our Italian films. Very warm and loveable characters, even the rogue Romeo who can't resist one-night stands even though he deeply loves his wife who is confined to a wheelchair and helps to care for her mother-in-law and MIL's pet chicken. (Said chicken is later adopted by the older woman's long-lost son Gustavo, a troubled architect and brother of Agata. The chicken signals Gustavo's acceptance into his new family, by laying an egg in his lap.) This will all make more sense when you see the film!
The glue that binds together most of the various story lines is Agata, a warm and lovely middle-aged woman who doesn't seem terribly bothered by conventions. Fans of the Italian film Pane e tulipani (Bread and Tulips) released in 2000 will recognize the luminous Licia Maglietta, who was cast by director Silvio Soldini as leading lady in both of these lovely films.
A bookstore owner, Agata finds that w hen she is overcome by strong emotions, she has the power to blow out light bulbs, fry small appliances (her toaster , her hairdryer, and even her computer!) So her sizzling love affair with a married younger man, her brother's mid -life crisis which stems from his discoveries about his birth family, and even her friends' troubles all contribute to the electrical storms which Agata summons.
The film is sometimes dramatic, often funny, always warm and almost believable, it's definitely worth a watch!