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A un passo dall'aurora
Small break between banging bodies for Mario Bianchi, before the masterpiece “Moana e Cicciolina Mondiali”. A non-trivial pause, at least in inspiration, because the Roman director is inspired by Arthur Schnitzler and his novel "Traumnovelle". Precisely that work that in 1999 also gave inspiration to Kubrick for his "Eyes Wide Shut" and according to Wikipedia, previously also to Beppe Cino with “Il cavaliere, la morte e il diavolo" of 1983.
In any case, the fact that Mario Bianchi anticipates Kubrick is the most important thing in "A un passo dall’Aurora", also because the rest, as you can imagine, leaves something to be desired.
Let's forget the good Stanley, because there is not the slightest comparison between the two works, even if we must recognize that Mario Bianchi tries to create a sad Venetian set and to give us a middle-class couple in crisis.
He tries but not everything goes for the best, because budget is very low, a par with artistic skills. Starting with the protagonist Gerardo Amato (i.e. Michele Placido's brother), who plays Riccardo, a well-known cardiologist, in search of new emotions. Well, pale, it's okay that you're sick of it all and it's okay that you live in a dark Venice, but the actor is tremendously passive and not very incisive. Tinì Cansino, who plays, badly, Lù, a prostitute who shows a little (not even a lot) of tits, thinks about putting some spice. The cast is completed by Adriana Russo, Pier Maria Cecchini and Franco Caracciolo who plays a trans.
The story tells about Riccardo who one day (in addition to the aforementioned prostitute) meets an old friend who invites him to an exclusive masquerade party in which to enter you need a password which is the title of the film. If you expect a hot eroticism in this event, you will be disappointed, but the protagonist, recognized as a well-known cardiologist, ends up in an intricate game of blackmail and threats, of Masonic sects, which lead to a dramatic ending.
A story that has, as we all know, considerable erotic / psychological potential, but as mentioned, here everything is so approximate and badly done, from acting to cinematography. Even Freud who appreciated the original work would not understand much about it.