Little Italy (12) | Home Ents Review

Dir. Donald Petrie, US, 2018, 101 mins

Cast: Hayden Christensen, Emma Roberts, Danny Aiello

Review by Michelle Moore

As children, Nikki and Leo were inseparable. Based in Little Italy Canada, their parents were partners who made Italian pizza with old family traditions. After a severe disagreement (reason unknown until the end) the pizza pair split and now own pizzerias next door to each other, playing pranks to try and sabotage the man next door.

After many years apart, Nikki (Roberts) returns to Little Italy having travelled to London to learn to cook, but only to apply for a working visa hoping to land a very impressive London chef role. When love blooms between the friends (of all ages), they must hide their romance from their family and when crunch come to crunch, the biggest food fight that Little Italy has ever seen results in an all-out war.

Bringing a true taste of Italy in their cooking with mother’s famous sauce and papa’s incredible crust gives a very authentic Italian feel to this movie; a family born into the passion that is pizza. Add to this, secrecy, mystery and passion and you have a romantic comedy to eat your heart out. It has all the amazing elements you want to see; young couples and well as more mature ones falling in love, cooking with passion and sincerity, wives who take their man’s side for the sake of a peaceful life yet still gossip behind the plants and of course, the comical things that people would do to each other’s businesses when a heated argument is left to simmer for a few years.

Hayden Christensen plays Leo perfectly; an Italian lad who wants to make pizzas his own way but not wanting to upset family tradition in the process. Emma Roberts as Nikki appears a little less Italian, running away from being pulled into the family pizza tradition to build on her own career in London, wanting to be a high class chef. Roberts is able to appear like a fish out of water when it comes to Italian cuisine but once her cooking passion combines with that Italian fragrance from Leo, this is where the magic happens.

Little Italy warms the heart, makes the stomach rumble and the lips smile – as well as adds a few giggles along for the journey. The story is family orientated and keeps this aspect close to the heart throughout.

Little Italy will be available to watch on UK digital download platforms from 11th March