Eric Lombard is at a crossroads–does he continue to pursue his long-shot dream of playing professional football, or does he start the next phase of his life, and apply to law school? As he struggles with this decision, Eric–along with his longtime girlfriend, Colleen–visits his cousin in Florence. There, to his surprise, he gets involved with the ancient local sport of Calcio Storico–and everything that Eric has assumed about his life is challenged.
Lost in Florence (previously titled The Tourist[ is an romantic drama film written and directed by Evan Oppenheimer and starring Brett Dalton, Stana Katic, Alessandra Mastronardi, Marco Bonini, Alessandro Preziosi and Emily Atack. The film follows a heartbroken former college football star who gets in over his head with a dangerous Florentine sport and an alluring local woman. The sport played in the film is Calcio Fiorentino, an archaic form of soccer that has been played in Italy since the sixteenth century.
Film Review for Lost in Florence
Any visitor to Florence knows that the myriad temptations include beautiful people, sumptuous food and wine and more stunning art than you could see in a lifetime. But for filmmakers, there’s a danger of succumbing to one in particular. They’ll inevitably want to make a movie in the picturesque historical city.
Such was the case for writer/director Evan Oppenheimer, whose Lost in Florence reveals the hazards of succumbing to the impulse. In this romantic drama, gorgeous bodies are displayed; delicious gelato is consumed; the exotic sport of calcio storico (“historic football”) is given plenty of screen time; and, needless to say, there’s lots of gorgeous scenery. What the film doesn’t have is anything resembling a compelling narrative.
The story revolves around Eric (Brett Dalton), who’s vacationing in Florence with his longtime girlfriend Colleen (Emily Atack). After his elaborately staged marriage proposal goes awry and Colleen returns home to the U.S., the inconsolable Eric decides to stay in Florence with his cousin Anna (Stana Kanic) and her Italian husband Gianni (Marco Bonini).
After a long spell of depression, Eric is finally coaxed by Gianni into joining him to watch the game — a combination of soccer, rugby and, well, brutal violence — that is a hugely popular summer event in the city. A former college football star, Eric finds himself deeply attracted to the sport and persuades some locals to let him join their team despite their reluctance to let a foreigner play. Eric also finds himself deeply attracted to the beautiful Stefania (Alessandria Mastronardi), who happens to be the girlfriend of his teammate Paolo (Alessandro Preziosi). Predictable complications ensue, with Eric, in a reversal of the usual romantic movie conundrum, eventually forced to choose between two women vying for his love.
The leisurely paced storyline is not enhanced by the stock characters, clichéd dialogue (Eric is constantly being warned that Italian women are trouble) and picture-postcard views of the normally packed city that here seem remarkably cleared out so the main characters can have it pretty much to themselves. Add to that the bland performances (with the exception of the vivaciously sexy Mastronardi), the ridiculous number of times Dalton bares his shirt to reveal his impossibly toned torso and the lengthy, climactic sports match that provides no suspense whatsoever, and you’ll feel very lost in Florence indeed.
Second Review for Lost in Florence
The male-fantasy earmarks of “Lost in Florence,” a guy-perspective romance written and directed by Evan Oppenheimer, are hard to ignore, but it’s still a reasonably pleasant film. Florence looks great; the cast is appealing; and you’ll learn about a rough-and-tumble sport you may not have encountered before.
Eric (Brett Dalton) and his girlfriend, Colleen (Emily Atack), are visiting Italy when he decides to propose, and is rejected. Colleen goes home to the States to think it over, but Eric stays in Florence, where he discovers two things: a local sport called calcio storico, and an attractive local woman, Stefania (Alessandra Mastronardi).
Calcio storico, a team sport, is what you might get if you put soccer, American football, rugby and boxing into a blender. It’s bone-crunching and virtually rule-free. Back in the United States, Eric had come close to making the National Football League, and he finds that his abilities transfer well to calcio storico. Unfortunately, the leader of the team he talks his way onto, Paolo (Alessandro Preziosi), also happens to be Stefania’s boyfriend.
Things go pretty much where a reader of lad magazines would want them to: climactic game decided at the last second; two gorgeous women competing for the same man. The story may not stay with you, but don’t be surprised if you come away with a strong desire to visit Florence.
Lost in Florence
Oirected by: Evan Oppenheimer
Starring: Emily Atack, Stana Katic, Brett Dalton, Robert Aramayo, Alessandra Mastronardi, Marco Bonini, Abbey Blake, Niccolo Cancellieri, Robert Aramayo, Alice Fusco
Screenplay by: Evan Oppenheimer
Production Design by: Gaia Zambelli
Cinematography by: Gherardo Gossi
Film Editing by: Dean Colin Marcial
Art Department: Bianca Pezzati
Music by: Wendy Blackstone
MPAA Rating: None.
Studio: Black Sand Picture
Release Date: January 27, 2017