© 2006 by C. E. Murphy. All Rights Reserved.

        An Italian ensemble drama about a group of twentysomethings at
loose ends,
Texas marks the feature film directorial debut of actor Fausto            
  Paravidinio who stars as Enrico. Set in a small northern town in the
Piedmont  region which the narrator imagines is akin to a town on the
Mexican border of the titular state, the film attempts to introduce the
audience to its large cast. At first, I must confess that I had a little bit of
trouble keeping everyone's identity clear -- who was dating whom, who
was related, etc. -- but eventually the filmmaker and his co-writers Iris
Fusetti and Carlo Orlando (who both co-star in the film as Cinzia and
Davide, respectively).

        While the screenwriters may have tried to inject elements of Chekhov
into the film,
Texas plays more like a soap opera. There are sexual
betrayals, such as the married teacher (the alluring Valeria Golina) who
cuckolds her husband (Valerio Binasco) with a young lover (Riccardo
Scamarcio) who in turn is cheating on Cinzia on whom Enrico has a
crush, etc.

        One of the major flaws of the film is that it has such a large cast
and many of the secondary characters are not developed well. They
are reduced to almost stereotypical roles, like the party girl nicknamed
"Coma," or the burly guy who burps out everything he says, or the
perpetual stoner, or the overweight girl. The roles are handled well but the
characters are nothing more than sketches.

        When the film is concentrating on the teacher and her affair and its
repercussions, Texas becomes fascinating. Paravidino shows promise
behind the camera, but for his next effort I would hope he has a stronger
screenplay.



                                                
Rating:        B-
        
Texas
L to R: Iris Fusetti as Cinzia
and Riccardo Scamarcio as
Gianluca  in
Texas, Fausto
Paravidino, Italy, 2005; 104
min.