If I Close My Eyes I'm Not Here
Se chiudo gli occhi non sono piu qui
Italy, 2014, 110 minutes, HD
If I Close My Eyes I'm Not Here Synopsis

In Vittorio Moroni's intimately observed coming-of-age drama, a Eurasian teen struggles to find his place in the universe - and in working-class Italy. Infused with a desire to uncover a side to Italy little-exposed in cinema, this is Moroni's second film that deals with themes around immigration.


Kiko is a teenager whose now dead father was Italian and his mother Marilou is from the Philippines. They live with Ennio, his mother's new boyfriend, a foreman who recruits and exploits illegal migrant workers. Kiko goes to school but at the same time he is forced to work in Ennio's building yards.


When the days aren't filled with gruelling work, Kiko escapes to an old abandoned bus that he's turned into his private refuge - a place to dream. One day it seems his fate could change: an elderly friend of his father's, Ettore, comes looking for Kiko and offers to become a tutor for him. Slowly but surely, Ettore's true identity and intentions come to the surface.

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Reviewed by dominicbrant
This is a stunning film.

Like a poem, it takes the ordinary and by simple twists and turns turns it into something timeless, personal and very precious. It's... more
This is a stunning film.\r\n\r\nLike a poem, it takes the ordinary and by simple twists and turns turns it into something timeless, personal and very precious. It's almost a visual poem, but the pace of the narrative keeps it from falling into something obscure and art house.\r\n\r\nThe story is simple, the characters believable and the twist surprising.\r\n\r\nTo write too much would be to detract from the subtlety of an absolute gem of a film.\r\n\r\nThis film, and those like it, are the reason I love Indie.\r\n\r\nThanks FilmDoo.\r\n\r\nD
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Reviewed by ricke17
This film has been critically acclaimed and this site seems to be the only one (AFAIK) which is streaming it when it was released on the 31st August. I... more
This film has been critically acclaimed and this site seems to be the only one (AFAIK) which is streaming it when it was released on the 31st August. I took the plunge and rented it.\r\nEssentially, this film centres around Kiko, Pilipino in origin but growing up in Italy. After the sudden death of his father , he is juggling school work and being forced to work in his mothers new boyfriends business. He is failing at school and often seeks refuge at a bus he has converted which has tender memories of his late father in it. A chance meeting with a "friend" of his late father seems to turn his life around. His new mentor helps him with his schooling and his grades improve. The shock revelation (which I won't disclose) from his mentor turns his life upside down. I won't reveal anymore as it is a film that needs to be watched as there are nuances and double entendre's that really make the viewer think. Parts of the film I was able to resonate with and I think the director done this well since it evoked emotions in me that had been dormant for a while. I only gave this 4.5 stars as it is a slow burner (you'll need to concentrate), and sometimes the subtitles were difficult to read. Worth renting and this seems to be exclusive (AFAIK) to Filmdoo.
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Thanks for not revealing the revelation (spoiler), I loved this film too. Maybe filmdoo can have a function where you can hide spolier mentions?
Thanks for not revealing the revelation (spoiler), I loved this film too. Maybe #filmdoo# can have a function where you can hide spolier mentions?
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blacksnakemoan Yeahhh!!! That would be extremely helpful! Thanks for the review ricke17 It does sound intriguing.
blacksnakemoan Yeahhh!!! That would be extremely helpful! Thanks for the review ricke17 It does sound intriguing.
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  • Absolutely loved this. Wonderful performances. Not what I was expecting from an Italian film.

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  • Absolutely loved this. Wonderful performances. Not what I was expecting from an Italian film.
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  • intersting point of view on immigration in a country that never talks about it much; Moroni's experience in directing documentaries comes in really helpful and honest.

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  • intersting point of view on immigration in a country that never talks about it much; Moroni's experience in directing documentaries comes in really helpful and honest.
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    agree. It's definitely got that eye of truth which you see in good docs
    agree. It's definitely got that eye of truth which you see in good docs
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  • Interesting how Moroni - a director more well-known for his documentaries - handles his actors: scene when Kiko returns to abandoned bus after Ettore's revelation is unscripted. Actor who plays Kiko (Mark Manalato) didn't know bus would be destroyed and his response does indeed seem very genuine.

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  • Interesting how Moroni - a director more well-known for his documentaries - handles his actors: scene when Kiko returns to abandoned bus after Ettore's revelation is unscripted. Actor who plays Kiko (Mark Manalato) didn't know bus would be destroyed and his response does indeed seem very genuine.
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