“Fireworks” is a heartbreaking and well done summer romance in Italy

Samuele Segreto and Gabriele Pizzurro are shirtless lying on the beach
“Fireworks” (2023) Samuele Segreto, Gabriele Pizzurro (Photos by Cinephobia Releasing)
Simona Malato is crying and hugging someone.
“Fireworks” (2023) Simona Malato (Photos by Cinephobia Releasing)

The 1980s were a challenging time for the LGBTQ community. The AIDS epidemic was spreading, which caused so much unnecessary hate towards gays. Hatred is like a disease of its own as well that causes so much of its own hurt. In Italy, where conservative Catholicism plays a big part in the country, it must have been extremely hard being an out queer person in 1982.

Fireworks is a film inspired by a true love story. The film explores a romance between two young men in a small town in Sicily. Homophobia is running rampant there. When Gianni and Nino meet during a bike accident, sparks quickly fly between the two of them. But the hateful ways of others in this town creates tension that will make them both question if they will choose love or let the hate of others destroy their connection.

The way the film portrys the two men embracing love despite such deep hatred is truly compelling. The setting and time period of the film will immerse you in a community where others feared gay love. But the strength Gianni and Nino exhibit is inspiring. How the film used actual fireworks to add something into their love story was an interesting and cool aspect.

Nino’s dad owns a fireworks company. And the fireworks add beauty to the relationship and it helps strengthen Nino and Gianni’s connection.

Fireworks is difficult and heartbreaking to watch at times. The pain that is placed on the shoulders of the young lovers is overwhelming at times. Love is love. Despite the films few sad dramatic scenes it is nice to see the redeeming moments and how even in such a conservative town, in the 1980s, there were still people who stood up to anti-gay hatred.

One character in particular who displays this beautifully is Giuseppina. She is such a lovely addition to the story and Anita Pomario did a great job in the performance.

Despite Fireworks having some difficult and very sad moments this is an incredible film. It shows how the self-centered nature of some human beings can really damage the love queer people have. It shows that having strength to embrace love can be scary and that standing up for what you believe in is always right.

Fireworks features sweet romance between two young men in the beautiful Italian countryside. If you liked Call Me By Your Name then this is one you have got to check out. And if you also just want a good emotional romantic drama this is one to definitely keep on your radar.

4.5/5 stars