“From the Vine” stars Joe Pantoliano, a former CEO who travels to Italy to reset his moral compass. He discovers his purpose by reviving in an old vineyard in his hometown. Balancing charisma and charm in a starring role, Pantoliano takes center stage in this mild comedy that also serves as a travelogue.
Some may know of Pantoliano from his “Sopranos” days; here he radiates the screen in every frame of the gorgeous Italian countryside. It’s as if he was meant to play the role; it’s refreshingly old-fashioned storytelling that scores high notes.
He leaves his wife (Wendy Crewson), job, and life in America due to his unbalanced feelings. His wife and daughter (Paula Brancati) are furious with him for leaving. Although there are always two sides to problems, he’s feeling unappreciated. Acerenza, Italy, his hometown, is a beautiful sun-kissed place, where he has fond memories of this former life with this grandfather and the family winery.
Director Sean Cisterna adds a touch of whimsy, as the grape leaves actually talk to him and provide council, stone statutes yawn, the moon winks, and smiles. Here’s an uplifting story of a man and his dream set in the wine country of Italy.
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Sarah Knight Adamson© October 11, 2020