Four stories by Luigi Pirandello are the basis of this five-part anthology film directed by Paolo and Vittorio Taviani. In the first, "The Other Son," Mariagrazia (Margaret Lozano), is the mother of three sons, one of whom lives with her. Despite his reverence for her, she can feel only contempt for the boy. The second tale, "Moonstruck" tells of Sidoro (Enrica Maria Modugno), a woman whose husband has epileptic seizures during a full moon which he must conceal from his neighbors. "The Jar" concerns a craftsman (Franco Franchi) who has been hired by a feudal lord, Don Lollo (Ciccio Ingrassia), to repair an enormous olive jar, but while working, he traps himself inside. In the fourth story, "Requiem," a group of villagers oppose a feudal landlord, the Baron (Pasquale Spadola), and a group of local officials in a struggle to be allowed to bury their dead. The final episode, "Conversing with Mother," is a dialogue between Pirandello (Omero Antonutti) and the shadow of his deceased mother (Regina Bianchi). Pirandello's simple tales, less philosophical than his classic plays, have been injected with the Taviani's characteristic pantheism and a reverence for nature which observers of Giuseppi Lanci's spectacular photography of the Sicilian landscape may come to share. Of the various episodes, "The Jar" and "Conversing"are the best.
Sight and Sound
"...Everything is beautiful: landscapes are breathtaking; faces are photogenically 'eloquent'; camera movements are flamboyant..." 12/01/1984 p.63-4
New York Times
"...Unfolds with [a] rapturous simplicity....The Tavianis at their best..." 10/13/1985 p.97
Los Angeles Times
"...Superb....KAOS is a warm and embracing experience, both amusing and rueful, its camera movement as graceful as baroque scrollwork..." 02/27/1986 p.C1