“The Life Ahead” (Netflix)

Sophia Loren’s son, Edoardo Ponti’s new film”The Life Ahead” centers around the growing relationship between Momo, a troubled twelve year old orphaned Senegalese immigrant (played by Ibrahima Gueye) and Madame Rosa, a Holocaust survivor and former prostitute, now in her late eighties (played by Sophia Loren). It’s a sentimental tear jerker. And I highly recommend it. Mick LaSalle of the SF Chronicle panned it. He hated the protagonist, Momo,–calling him “obnoxious” and objected to the lack of development of Loren’s character. True, little is known about Madame Rosa except in her current role as caretaker of the children of prostitutes. Likewise, we are given very little history of any of the other figures in the film. But to bemoan that is to miss the point. Set in Bari, a coastal city of Southern Italy with an increasing number of illegal immigrants and growing xenophobia, “The Life Ahead” is a film about possibilities, a world where Muslims, Jews, Transgenders, African immigrants are accepted with compassion and love. It is a propaganda film for tolerance. And that’s fine with me.


  1. S – Just saw “The Life Ahead” post. Love reading them all and just want to let you know they’re affecting how we schedule the evening’s entertainment and much appreciated!

    Your loyal couch potato friend,


  2. I saw the advertisement for this on Netflix last night. Sophia Loren still draws the eye; what a beautiful woman. We’ll check it out after we finish creepy SciFi time travel series, Dark. It requires active charting to keep track of time periods and characters. Not for the faint of heart.


  3. I definitely plan to watch this; thanks for reaffirming that I should! I never pay any attention to what Mick LaSalle likes! Took a class from him at SFCC once: worthless.


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