A Life Not to Follow – Christopher Di Nunzio’s crime family neo-noir
Directed by: Christopher Di Nunzio
Christopher Di Nunzio’s first film since the amazing short film “Under the Dark Wing”, has him once again zeroing in on the crime genre. This time around, the narrative structure is much different though in that he uses three separate but intertwining stories told form three different character’s viewpoints. Each of the three passes the baton of being the central figure to the film, and it works, very well, to the films advantage.
The first segment focuses on Eric (Leo). Eric is a hit man for a local crime family, who can no longer hold back his rage at the thought of the things that he (and more importantly the family he works for) has done. He knows what he is about to do guarantees that he is a dead man, but he has to see it through. Unfortunately, an innocent, young woman who helps him, gets caught up in the violence and must go on the run.
The second segment shifts the film’s focus over to Luca (Capozzi). He is part of a rival family, and has been given a chance at becoming a made man. The only problem is that to achieve the status he feels he deserves, he has to kill his best friend. This is my favorite of the three segments, because I love the power versus loyalty aspect. Also, I felt like of the three key characters Capozzi did the best at delivering a knock out performance. The guy should seriously be in Scorsese’s next gangster flick.
The final chapter’s central figure is cop turned P.I. Tobias (Graziano). Tobias is trying to solve a case involving the young lady who went missing, after her collaboration with Eric. Tobias is also a tortured soul, due to his past as a cop and mistakes he made that led him to having to become a private investigator. If he wants to crack the case and feel some sort of vindication, he will have to figure out what happened with both Eric and Luca.
“A Life Not to Follow” is a solid neo-noir crime film. Di Nunzio once again shows that he is a very capable director inside a genre that is sometimes easy to yawn at. The cinematography from Nolan Yee is wonderfully claustrophobic and really helps set the seedy vibe that the films achieves. All in all, this movie is just another reason I am dying to see Mr. Di Nunzio get a large(er) budget to work with. Something tells me he is capable of some pretty great things.
Watch trailer below