Two Family House

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Product Overview

Michael Rispoli plays Buddy Visalo, a factory worker with big dreams and a tendency to be unsuccessful in translating those dreams into reality. Once an aspiring singer hoping to emulate his idol, Julius La Rosa of the "Your Hit Parade" television show, Buddy now lives in Staten Island with this unwaveringly pragmatic wife, Estelle (Katherine Narducci). With the purchase of a dilapidated old house, Buddy hopes to turn the building into a downstairs tavern where he can perform while he and Estelle live upstairs. However, they soon discover it inhabited by two previous tenants: an irascible drunk Irishman named Jim O'Neary (Kevin Conway) and his much younger, very pregnant wife, Mary (Kelly Mcdonald). In spite of his initial intentions to drive the couple out, the kind-hearted Buddy eventually befriends Mary after she gives birth and is abandoned by her husband. Gradually, their friendship turns to love based on their mutual need for support. Buddy must eventually make a choice about his true loves in life in this touching and affecting romantic comedy.


Studio Lions Gate
SKU 40223328
UPC 031398836926
UPC 14 00031398836926
Format DVD
Release Date 7/22/2003
Rating Rating
Theatrical Release
Editors Note
Note Set in the urban backwater of Staten Island in the 1950s, TWO FAMILY HOUSE tells the story of Buddy Visalo (Michael Rispoli), who dreams of singing stardom but is forced to face the struggles of an ordinary life. After his one shot at making the big time is nixed by his fiancée, Estelle (Katherine Narducci), he tries to settle into married life, but he never manages to subdue his overarching ambition to be a star. Buddy launches a string of failed ventures before eventually pinning his hopes on a run-down house, where he plans to open a bar and be the star attraction. But between his wife's control-freak urges and his tenants' refusal to vacate the house, nothing goes as planned. However, in his campaign to evict the couple that rents from him--a pregnant young Irish beauty (Kelly Macdonald) and her abusive, drunk husband (Kevin Conway)--he finds the one sympathetic soul in his life. And again he is forced to choose between his sense of duty and his heart.^Writer and director Raymond De Felitta (CAFÉ SOCIETY) approaches the story of TWO FAMILY HOUSE with humor and affection, wihout shying away from the uglier realities of working-class life. While the well-trodden film terrain of New York's Italian-American communities is a tough place to shine, both the director and the outstanding ensemble cast keep the broad strokes to a minimum, which is what propels this story beyond the confines of its small world.
Plot Summary
Summary In TWO FAMILY HOUSE, Buddy Visalo (Michael Rispoli) has a master plan: he'll buy a duplex, live on the top floor with his wife, Estelle (Katherine Narducci), and turn the ground floor into a popular jazz club. The only problem is, the house that Buddy buys already has occupants, and one of them is a pregnant young Irish woman whose abusive husband gives her little support. The two families must learn to live together and support each other, despite their differences and unrealized dreams.
New York Times "...A sweet, wise, heartwarming sleeper written and directed by Raymond De Felitta..." 10/06/2000 p.E20
USA Today "...Raymond De Felitta infuses his low-budget effort with a mellow feel [and is] good with expressing tender emotions..." -- 3 out of 4 stars 10/06/2000 p.6E
Entertainment Weekly "...Sundance-style filmmaking at its most successful -- personal with universal undertones, told with an unobtrusive flair..." -- Rating: A- 10/27/2000 p.88
Box Office "...[De Felitta] maintains a solid visual context and emotional tone. It's outstanding work all around..." 10/01/2000 p.71
Rolling Stone "...De Felitta creates something wonderfully funny and touching....Nicely done all around..." 10/26/2000 p.122
Los Angeles Times "...[With] rich, rueful humor, poignancy and tenderness....A film of rare, delicate sensibility..." 10/06/2000 p.C20
Raymond DeFelitta
Kelly MacDonald
Michael Rispoli
Cast & Crew
Katherine Narducci - Actor
Kelly McDonald - Actor
Kevin Conway - Actor
Michael Rispoli - Actor
Raymond DeFellitta - Director
Michael Mayers - Director of Photography
Stephen Endelman - Musical Score
Adam Brightman, et al. - Producer
Raymond DeFelitta - Writer
Technical Info
Original Release Date 2000
Catalog ID 8369-D
UPC 00031398836926
Number of Discs 1
Running Time 109 minutes
Color Color
Original Language English
Available Audio Tracks English [CC], English
Aspect Ratio
ReviewSource James Berardinelli's ReelViews
Review One of the most refreshing aspects of Two Family House is that it doesn't feel the need to go through all of the obligatory (and predictable) plot contortions mandated by most romances. Buddy and Mary don't endure the Big Breakup caused by the Big Misunderstanding, which, in turn, is followed by the Bigger Reunion. Their relationship has its share of complications, but they're not the run-of-the-mill stumbling blocks that we see in nine out of ten mainstream films. That's only one of many reasons why Two Family House is worth seeing. Forget the voiceover and concentrate on what the characters are saying and doing, and the payoff will be worth the effort.
Reviewer James Berardinelli
ReviewRating 8
Product Attributes
Actor Rispoli,Michael
Label Trimark Home Entertainment
Music Format DVD
Video Format DVD
Newsday One of the best. A marvel!

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