Set in Naples in the 80s, a formative tragedy occurs while Fabietto (played by Filippo Scotti, stand-in alter ego for the young Sorrentino) attends a football game that features the much mythologised Maradona (as referenced in the title).
Also present is Sorrentino regular Tony Servillo (The Consequences of Love, The Great Beauty), an actor that – as ever – brings an enigmatic and wry grace to his performance as Fabietto’s father, an older man that works at a bank but still considers himself a devoted communist.
What follows is a sweaty evocation of adolescence in a coming-of-age recollection that winds its memory of mischief and sadness between the bawdy clamour of families, football, cinema and sex.
Tonally balanced between Fellini’s Amarcord (1973) and Cinema Paradiso (dir. Giuseppi Tornatore, 1999), Sorrentino’s affectionately caricatured cross-section of Italian life, is filtered through an earnest sentimentalism that befits this blur of wistful biography and raw emotion.