Alessandro Cattelan: One Simple Question follows Alessandro Cattelan’s journey in pursuit of an answer to a question, seemingly simple, from his daughter, Nina: “Daddy, how do you find happiness?” The documentary series is directed by Bellone and Consonni and consist of 6 episodes, each around 3O minutes long.
Netflix describes the series as:
Alessandro Cattelan searches for happiness through interviews and unique experiences with celebrity guests like Paolo Sorrentino and Roberto Baggio.
– Alessandro Cattelan: One Simple Question review does not contain spoilers –
In his quest for happiness, Italian television and radio presenter Alessandro Cattelan embarks on a brand new journey. Along with his guests, Alessandro shares a series of thought-provoking events. The first guest to star on the show is Robberto Baggio, a form soccer player. He talks about his profound faith in Buddhism. “Although, Buddhism teaches us that happiness is inside us. You need to find a way to get it out. I found it, thanks to Buddhism”, Baggio states.
After having a cup of coffee, he shows us around his house and displays his enormous collection of wooden ducks and geese. Every single piece has a moving and equally beautiful story, he tells Alessandro. In episode one, we also see a snippet where Alessandro is having a chat with a psychiatrist, Girgio Piccinino, in a local pub. In the second episode, Alessandro sets out on a road trip with four other people, belonging to different religious groups. And they reflect on their experiences of religious beliefs. This episode also stars an Oscar-winning filmmaker, Paolo Sorrentino.
The third episode ponders over a very significant question – ‘Is there happiness in pain?’ Gianluca Vialli, an ex-soccer player recounts his battle with pancreatic cancer and his views on mortality. The last three episodes follow a similar format where Alessandro Cattelan meets with famous personalities from various fields and explore different ways to find happiness. In a bid to encompass a wider, spiritual sense of existence, Alessandro takes on a number of expeditions, from bungee jumping to participating in X-Factor, with undisguised zeal, and emerges as a true advocate for ‘living life to the fullest’.
The makers of the show were able to successfully orchestrate an inspiring and totally captivating narrative that teaches us a thing or two about choosing happiness and appreciating the little things in life. The docu-series incorporates a range of storytelling tools to elevate its marketability. The general idea here is to take a more radical approach in breaking down the elementary concepts of achieving peak happiness. There are a couple of events in the documentary that one may find to be daunting to an extent, and with such set-pieces, in my opinion, the creators intended to evoke a feeling of slight disconcert in order to give the series an additional depth.
The best part about the entire series is Alessandro Cattelan and the way he delivers compelling rhetoric. He is extremely respectful in his manner of asking questions to his guests. Cattelan also showcases his amazing sense of humour which provides the audience with a much needed comic relief.
The series gets a lot done in its bite-sized episodes, and it lurches from one fascinating set-piece to another. The camerawork is truly exemplary, and there are a couple of frames that does a wonderful job at capturing the true essence of life.
Alessandro Cattelan: One Simple Question – The Final Verdict
A highly original and eye-opening, multi-genre documentary series. I really didn’t expect anything going in, but was pleasantly surprised. The show revolves around the abstract theme of finding happiness and seeking a Great Perhaps. The precision with which it narrates a thought-provoking and visually captivating story is applause-worthy. Catten was almost unbearably moving in his performance. I highly recommend watching Alessandro Cattelan: One Simple Question. It is well-crafted and leaves a profound impression.
Alessandro Cattelan: One Simple Question is streaming on Netflix.Follow us on Instagram & Facebook to keep yourself updated with the latest news and reviews.