Under the Amalfi Sun is an unremarkable and unnecessary sequel to Under the Riccione Sun that features gorgeous European scenery but little else of interest.
This review of the Netflix film Under the Amalfi Sun (2022) does not contain spoilers.
If you’re wondering if Under the Riccione Sun (2020) really needed a sequel, you’re not alone. The existence of Under the Amalfi Sun (2022) is a bit perplexing, considering that its predecessor didn’t seem to set up the need for a follow-up at all – nor was it really successful enough to warrant one. But, Martina Pastori directs this Italian-language summer vacation rom-com that proves that you need a true story to tell to demand a sequel.
Caterina Salvadori, Enrico Vanzina, and Ciro Zecca’s screenplay picks up a year after the events of Under the Riccione Sun as Camilla (Ludovica Martino) returns to Italy from her school year in Canada. Her boyfriend Vincenzo (Lorenzo Zurzolo) is thrilled to be reunited with her and anxious to ask her to move in with him. But being together all summer, and dealing with his blindness in person, is very different from a long-distance relationship and it’s unclear if they’re up for the challenge.
The biggest issue with the film is its focus on Cami and Vinz’s relationship, which isn’t interesting enough to sustain the film. They essentially deal with the same issue throughout the entire film before finally resolving it at the end. While Vinz’s frustration at how those in his life baby him because of his disability is a topic that could be engaging, the film seems to paint him as petulant.
The plotlines involving Cami and Vinz’s friends are much more interesting. Cami has brought her friend Nathalie (Kyshan Wilson) with her and this new character breathes some life into the story. She is insecure because of her past relationship problems and the mixed results of her drastic weight loss. Seeing her navigate her new friendship with Vinz’s best friend Furio (Davide Calgaro) and a summer fling with local bad boy Hans (Nicholas Maupas) would have been a much better focus for the film. Hans is teaching Furio how to get girls and Furio is trying to be someone he’s not to attract the beautiful influencer Rebecca (Elena Funari).
A side plotline sees Vinz’s overprotective mother Irene (Isabella Ferrari) cancelling her trip with her boyfriend Lucio (Luca Ward) at the last minute because she’s concerned about her son going on vacation without her for the first time. The issues between the couple seem contrived and overdone.
If you’re just looking for a bland teen dramedy and some gorgeous European scenery, then Under the Amalfi Sun might be worth it. (Though I recommend watching with the Italian language and English subtitles because the English audio dub is rough.) In some ways, it seems like the film might be more entertaining if it was worse; but it’s not even bad enough to be laughable. Unfortunately, Under the Amalfi Sun is an unremarkable and boring sequel that no one asked for.
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