5. If you ever wanted an updated look into Italy’s present-day Mafia, Gomorrah, like the 2008 film, is based on a nonfiction book by Roberto Saviano. Modern Naples is shown to be an urban hell of concrete similar to the streets of any american ghetto. This Italian drama examines men and women at every level of society and how they are often trapped by a corrupt system. Vengeance and violence are a daily way of life along with conflicts with cops and other crews and bosses. Gomorrah feels like a reflection of the many problems facing contemporary Italians, through the eyes of two “made guys,” Ciro (Marco D’Amore) and Attilio (Antonio Milo).
4. Ciro and Attilio’s boss, the deadly Pietro Savastano (Fortunato Cerlino), is unforgettable as he tries to handle the pressure as other crime familys plot to take his kingdom. With a vibe I would compare to HBO’s Sorpranos, his unfocused son Genny (Salvatore Esposito) cannot be relied upon to take over the family business. Pietro’s wife, Imma (Maria Pia Calzone) is his true partner in crime and plays a pivotal role in creating a better future or their extended crime family.
3. The first season explores the gritty details on how a crime organization uses its drug money along with ruthless violence to control every type of person imaginable on Italy’s socioeconomic ladder. The show is at its best when it follows dirty money as it flows from poor African immigrant neighborhood to the high powered offices of Italian corporations. Pietro and Imma are focused on trying to clean up the family’s money and we see how they attempt to launder it through respectable businesses. The unseen influence on real estate and finance spins an entertaining tale of family survival and how legacys and empires are built.
2. Gomorrah excels at showcasing how the cement high-rises of Marseilles, Naples, is ultimately controlled and influenced by gun violence and prison inmates. Italy’s prisons, like many worldwide, are segregated by race but make alliances when the money is right. The power struggles in the Gomorrah prison examines who really controls the worlds modern societies, the hard working citizens or those trapped inside the corrupt prison system.
1. The chemistry between Ciro and Attilio is the foundation of the show and the reason why the show does a fantastic job exploring the roles of fathers and mentors and how they shape their sons and protegés. These criminals are ultimately just working men trying to survive in a society that seems to be as evil as it has ever been. The multiple layers of emotion add true depth to the world created by writer Stefano Bises. With a unique and striking visual look directors Stefano Sollima, Francesca Comencini, and Claudio Cupellini have created a series already into Season 2 that you must watch.