We Have a Pope

Director: Nanni Moretti
Year Released: 2011
Rating: 2.5

After the passing of one Pope, the Cardinals congregate in the Vatican to select a new one (Michel Piccoli), with one pressing problem: the Pope they pick doesn't want the job ... and their only solution is to hire a psychoanalyst (Moretti, in what turns out to be a somewhat superfluous role) to "cure" him of his anxiety. The premise is fantastic - as Piccoli's character runs off and wanders around Rome, searching for some kind of 'answer' to his dilemma - but it does get a bit confused in the third act, when Moretti's symbolism basically runs away with him: the Cardinals pass time by playing games (cards or volleyball, suggesting they're overgrown children) while Piccoli revisits the theater, suggesting that 'playing' the Pontiff is no different than a stage actor losing his mind. Though this is billed as a comedy, it isn't very funny, and as hard as Moretti 'tries' to be reverent, I fear his (internal) irreverence towards his subject (the Catholic Church) comes through in the end.