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Benedict Cumberbatch gives life to the words of British soldier Norman Lewis, whose remarkable memoir of post-World War II Naples form the basis for this haunting evocation of a ravaged land, and later a city of infinite charm. Lewis entered Naples as part of an invasion of Nazi-occupied Italy.
His memories of a ravaged land and his return many years later are recalled with magnificent warmth and wit.
Filmmaker Francesco Patierno combines riveting archival war footage with clips from movies set in Naples from the 1950s and 60s (featuring Marcello Mastroianni, Alan Arkin, Ernest Borgnine) to evoke a city that was as much a victim of the war as any individual, but that has come back to life with all the charisma of Vesuvius, its very own volcano.