Astrology helps find love in new show

By Juan Cavillo

Netflix’s Italian romantic comedy “An Astrological Guide for Broken Hearts” follows the tired paint-by-numbers romantic series format, but its style saves it from mediocrity.
Using astrology as the mechanic for creating romance for the series’ main characters is a bit quaint.
Luckily the show’s themes and acting drive it forward.
Alice, played by Claudia Gusmano, is struggling to get over her break-up with Carlo Baresi, played by Alberto Paradossi.
Baresi is engaged to a new woman and all three work together, which makes the situation worse.
In a turn of good fortune, Alice meets Tio Falcetti, played by Lorenzo Adorni, and they become fast friends.
From there Falcetti, Tio for short, uses his skill in astrology and romance, to help Alice in her love life.
Throw in multiple handsome men, who Alice finds intriguing and lingering looks with her boss and the stage is set.
This all happens at their workplace, Dora TV, a television show production and development studio.
Again, the show is not revolutionary by any means. It is pretty much the same as every other show or movie about relationships and love.
It’s “An Astrological Guide for Broken Hearts” style that really shines through during the six-episode-run of the show.
When it comes to costumes, set design and location, this series really kicks it into high gear.
Each and every character is dressed to impress on this show.
Almost all the scenes that Alice is in have her wearing stylish clothing and footwear.
One of Alice’s love interests or antagonists Davide Sardi, played by Michele Rosiello, is dressed in every scene he is in like a model on the cover of GQ magazine.
It might be the differences between American and European styles that really makes the wardrobe stand out, but it’s something programs in the United States might want to try.
The series also does wonders with its set design and location variation. The production studio is filled to the brim with offices and wardrobe sections.
During segments where the team films a TV program the control room and main stage show attention to detail.
The only noticeable fly in the ointment is how small the main stage is compared to stages in other shows.
Again, this might be due to differences between the U.S. and European production houses.
The outside shots are also fun and interesting.
One shot has Alice and Tio spending time with family out in a beautiful countryside homestead.
The location was totally different from other shows that try to emulate European architecture.
“An Astrological Guide for Broken Hearts” has some good moments in its story as well.
They are few and far between unfortunately and don’t really push the actors to really show emotion. Of all the characters, Gusmano and Adorni are on screen the most.
Their best moments are when the pair are not talking about love or astrology.
There is a particularly interesting scene where the pair is making up after a fight, both Adorni and Gusmano show vulnerability, making the scene much more believable.
This moment shows what the program could have been if it allowed its characters a chance to grow and have real moments instead of focusing on being lovesick and forlorn or silly and horny.
It is disheartening that this show is not as fun and engaging as the trailer made it out to be.
Most of the problem lies in the program not wanting to try to find something new to do. “An Astrological Guide to Broken Hearts” is available to stream now on Netflix. The show has six episodes and is rated TV-14.

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