Matteo Scuro is a retired Sicilian bureaucrat (responsible mainly for the writing of birth certificates), a widower with five children, all of whom live on the mainland and hold responsible jobs. He decides to surprise each with a visit and finds none as he imagined. The film is a veritable travelogue across contemporary Italy, as Matteo journeys to Napoli, Roma, Firenze, Milano, and Turino to search for each of his children; he even spends one night on the streets among the homeless. Scuro returns to Sicily, visits his wife’s grave, and reports with irony that “stanno tutti bene” (everybody’s fine).
It won the Prize of the Ecumenical Jury (Giuseppe Tornatore) and was nominated for Golden Palm (Giuseppe Tornatore) at the 1990 Cannes Film Festival. It also won the David di Donatello Awards for David Best Music (Ennio Morricone) and the Italian National Syndicate of Film Journalists for Silver Ribbon Best Original Story (Giuseppe Tornatore).