Quiet Chaos

Quiet Chaos

DVD Rating: ****

Reviewed by: Anton Bitel

Read Jennie Kermode's film review of Quiet Chaos

The menus on this disc from New Wave Films are free of music or moving images, making them appropriately calm – but there are plenty of surprises in the extras.

First up, in a 10-minute on-set interview, director Antonelli Grimaldi reveals that his drama of loss and disengagement borrowed visual cues from the most unlikely of sources, including Dawn Of The Dead (1978), Deep Red (1975) and Miller's Crossing (1990).

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In a much briefer interview, the film's star and co-adaptor Nanni Moretti summarises his protagonist perfectly as a "a volcano that doesn't erupt", and explains the changes made to Sandro Veronesi's novel. In a third interview, Veronesi himself is joined by Moretti, discussing the novel's origins and themes, its relationship to Moretti's own grief-themed drama The Son's Room (2001), and the inevitable controversy that will come from filming chapter 32, in which the protagonist has a "supercharged sexual relationship" with a woman. It is, as Veronesi admits, "the real reason everyone is waiting to see this film" – not least because it is so unlike anything that Moretti has ever done before on screen.

The Hugging Man: Quiet Chaos Behind-the-Scenes (47 minutes) is a featurette of exemplary unfussiness. There is no commentary, no talking heads, just the quiet observation of a filmset as scenes quietly come to life from the chaos. Most fascinatingly of all, we see Moretti struggling to confine himself to the role of actor in another director's film – and we also get to see him swapping film chat with an even more famous director appearing here just as an actor, Roman Polanski.

A shorter behind-the-scenes featurette entitled Photography and Music (nine minutes) shows Grimaldi doing post-production work with his DP Alessandro Pesci and composer Paolo Buonvino. Grimaldi offers a compelling account of how his decisions about the film's look and sound reflect its themes and dramatic trajectory more broadly – although his likening of the film to a 'rock concert' is more obscure.

Reviewed on: 11 Mar 2009
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Quiet Chaos packshot
A bereaved husband decides to spend each day waiting for his daughter outside her school, discovering a new world in the process.
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Product Code: NW002

Region: 2

Ratio: 1.85:1 anamorphic widescreen

Sound: Dolby Digital 2.0

Extras: Optional English subtitles, theatrical trailer, interviews, making-of and behind-the-scenes featurettes

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