The Hand of God
RELEASE DATE: December 3, 2021 (theatrically)
December 15, 2021 (streaming)
RATING: R (sexual content, language, brief drug use, some graphic nudity)
In The Hand of God, Academy-award winning writer/director Paolo Sorrentino (Il Divo, The Great
Beauty) brings us a largely autobiographical coming of age story set in the 1980s in his native hometown
of Naples, Italy.
With dialogue in Italian (English subtitles are available), the story centers on the adolescent Fabietto
Schisa (Filippo Scotti) as he navigates the choppy waters of family dynamics, great expectations, raging
hormones, and tragedy. He pines for his beautiful aunt, Patrizia (Luisa Ranieri), as she endures a violent
and unsatisfied marriage. Despite some very heavy thematic elements, The Hand of God also offers
depictions of great joy, especially when legendary football (soccer) player Diego Maradona arrives to
play, setting in motion a series of events that the viewer can determine are acts of fate or of
It is appropriate that legendary Italian filmmaker Frederico Fellini is referenced in The Hand of God, as
much of this effort feels like a Fellini film, with eccentric characters and a cinematic style that is visually
pleasing yet often disjointed. The cinematography by Daria D’Antonio is simply exquisite.