The Life Ahead: the two central characters in Edoardo Ponti’s drama are not quite attracting opposites, as they both squarely fall in a marginalized stratum of society. However, those similarities make the desire to forego the differences and find a common ground more credible. The main character of the story, a young kid who has pretty much everything going on against him, is well-defended by newcomer Ibrahima Gueye, who plays the character with understandable ferocity but also a happy, wide-open smile. Sophia Loren, as the aged prostitute, is vulnerable and touching. Renato Carpentieri and Babak Karimi are quietly effective as two old friends of her. The film has a diverse and capable cast of character and performers, top to bottom. The film is very confidently made, with the fine musical score by Gabriel Yared, cinematography by Angus Hudson, and editing by Jacopo Quadri.