Much like THE FATHER, THE LIFE AHEAD is packed with great performances, led by the luminous, 86-year-old Sofia Loren, but saddled with a predictable story. Sofia plays Madame Rosa, an ex-prostitute and Holocaust survivor who cares for the uncared children of other prostitutes. Enter, Momo, a 12-year-old street urchin, played by Ibrahima Gueye, who Madame Rosa reluctantly takes in, after Moma steals her purse. Directed confidently by Eduardo Ponti, Sofia’s son, the standard story-arc of the hooker with the heart of gold and enemies turning friends feels organic, just not very original. Newcomer Ibrahima is up to the task of sharing the screen with Sofia, who reminds us of what it means to be a truly talented movie star, but it is their performances alone that make this worthy of a watch.
Available on Netflix, THE LIFE AHEAD offers the stunning return to the screen by Sofia Loren, that is underwhelmed by a well-trodden story.