That Rimini is a film set in that very Italian city during the depths of winter is fitting. An eerie ghost town a shadow of its former self falling apart at the seams having seen better times – it’s the architectural equivalent of Ritchie Bravo, a lounge singer whose glory days are well behind him. Bravo (played to deliriously sleazy effect by Michael Thomas) is an aging crooner still thinking of himself as something of a lothario to his elderly and besotted female following and yet his audience barely registers in double figures to see him perform. Turning up in coaches to see him in barely adequate hotels his singing is not the only way he performs topping up his money by charging the fans for sex in gruesome lurid detail. That granny porn is yet another unsavoury avenue of the cyber sewer of the internet is a niche market and Rimini has it fair share of rutting retirees as Bravo coaxes them into bed and to climax and frankly for these poor women it must be like have the contents of a vacuum cleaner emptied over them.
Bravo has gone home to Austria where his mother has died and, along with his brother and his frail elderly father suffering from dementia and not really aware of why he’s at a funeral, but its back in Rimini that Bravo has his own crisis when his long forgotten adult daughter turns up demanding money for all the years he has been away as some sort of recompense. Having squandered his money he has none to give her and his already sleazy lifestyle becomes more sordid when he focuses his attention on plundering his father’s bank account and descending ever further into a sort of coastal resort ring of hell when he starts filming the pensioners he’s banging for blackmail. It’s inevitable that this will not end well for anyone.
There’s a languorous pace to Rimini that may be little too slow but the location work is extraordinary with the resort dotted with homeless sleeping where ever they can and the weather increasingly making the place look ever more remote and bleak. But it’s Michael Thomas who is remarkable as the lecherous lounge singer looking like Ray Winstone and Mickey Rourke’s least fortunate brother. Wearing spanx that’s about as effective as putting an elastic band around a bag of frozen offal he dresses like some throwback from 1976 that still would have looked out of place in a 1976 Norwich wine bar and yet there’s something about him that you just can’t take your eyes off no matter how lurid it gets (which is frequent) making Rimini is a warped wonder of a film.
Here’s the Rimini trailer…..