Coming to theatres from director Valeria Golino and Buena Onda comes a story of a woman who helps with a bit of HONEY.
This film tells the story of Honey aka Irene (Jasmine Trinca), a woman who helps people with terminal illnesses by performing euthanasia. Believing she is doing what’s right, Irene travels to Mexico to get the medicines needed to help her clients.
Working with Rocco (Libero De Rienzo) she is sent to visit Carlo Grimaldi (Carlo Cecchi). Uneasy about helping him, she finds the way he is handling everything as trouble. Revisiting him Irene discovers that Grimaldi isn’t terminally ill at all and becomes angry feeling she has been used.
But she is also drawn to Grimaldi as a strange and powerful strained friendship begins between the two.
FINAL WORD: Trinca as Honey/Irene is a woman who definitely has walls built around her life. The duality here is that she can be soft-spoken and caring with her clients one moment and blast emotions through her ear buds the next. Her relationship with Grimaldi has both but she gets both back in return.
Cecchi as Grimaldi is dealing with his own life of depression but Honey brings him specks of light – and lots of fight. Watching this actor sit quietly deep in his pain to his moment of visiting Honey near the shore I was taken with Cecchi’s performance to the very end.
De Rienzo as Rocco has a small role being the middle-man and contact for the clients and Honey. I’m never quite sure however what his motivating force is for doing it all. I mean obviously there are large amounts of money as seen in the envelopes; perhaps I want to think that he had a loftier goal than money but I’m not sure.
Other cast include: Vinicio Marchioni as Stefano, Iaia Forte as Clelia, Roberto De Francesco as Filippo, Barbara Ronchi as Sandra, Massimiliano Iacolucci as Padre di Irene, Claudio Guain as Ennio, Elena Callegari as Carla, Teresa Acerbis as Madre di Lorenzo and Jacopo Crovella as Lorenzo.
TUBS OF POPCORN: I give HONEY three tubs of popcorn out of five. This is a story that has so many levels to think about. Of course there is the obvious and that is the debate that still goes on regarding euthanasia and those who provide assisted suicides.
Another level is the amazing courage it takes for someone to do such a service. No matter what side of the fence you are on this issue, HONEY attempts to provide a look from both sides. From a husband wanting to stop his wife’s pain to a mother saying goodbye to her son, this is an emotional film with no doubt.
The scenes between Irene and Grimaldi were my absolute favorite of the film as far as intense interactions. Yes, the family scenes are touching and I’d never want to make that decision but in Grimaldi’s case, it’s an illness that can’t be seen except in his face.
In the end – sometime looking after others requires putting yourself first!