Abel Ferrara’s Napoli Napoli Napoli

by Lauren Wissot

Abel Ferrara’s Napoli Napoli Napoli is as rambling and all over the place as his previous foray into documentary filmmaking, Chelsea on the Rocks. This time his approach is the same: talking-head interviews haphazardly mixed with staged reenactments, with some archival images thrown in at random. But compared to a rebel director like Werner Herzog, who weds his similar restlessness to an amazingly diverse appetite, Ferrara seems just an addict-jumpy auteur with a frustratingly immature and narrow vision; sex and violence, drugs, and the arts are pretty much all he’s interested in. Which is why after about 15 minutes into Napoli Napoli Napoli, you find yourself wondering why he doesn’t just stick to fiction instead.

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