Silent J’s review published on Letterboxd:
This film plays like two movies in one. The first half is like a slapstick comedy while the second is a heartfelt drama. I just wanna say off the back that this is'nt for everyone. Some may not be able to stand how goofy the story and the main character are in the beginning. As a whole, I thought this was excellent. The story and atmosphere felt epic in the second half. This comedy was, while a bit annoying at some points, was hilarious and when the story went from energetic and funny to heartwrenching and sad, it helped add to the emotion that culminated in the second.
Roberto Benigni's performance is a mix bag to say the least. He comes off as a little annoying in the first half (for me at least) but wins me over in the second half with a very heartfelt and poignant performance. While I don't believe he should have won Best Actor over Edward Norton (American History X) Benigni gave a wonderful and brilliant performance.
The score and cinematography help make this film, for lack of a better word, beautiful. This film literally gets better and better with each minute and becomes highly rewarding when it's all over.