An utterly tragic episode, “Silenzio” unfolds almost exclusively in the mountains of Calabria. With the exception of a few scenes with John Paul Getty at his mansion and Gail Getty in Rome, the vast majority of this hour tracks John Paul Getty III and the man who saved his life. It’s so refreshing when a star-studded series like Trust also allows for the discovery of a new talent, which is the case with Andrea Arcangeli, who plays the savior Angelo. According to the show’s version of events, this young man risked everything to try and save the life of a man he considered a friend, but he lost his life in the process. “Silenzio” has the tense tone of someone tied to the train tracks: We know the train is coming, and it’s only a matter of when.
As played by Harris Dickinson and Arcangeli, Paul and Angelo are two “beautiful boys” merely trying to survive. At the end of last week’s episode, instead of getting Paul and leading him to his death, Angelo told him they had to run, but where? The Mob runs the entire region to such a degree that no one would dare abet two men trying to escape. The entire community turns into a search party, and it feels inevitable that someone will find Angelo and the golden hippie.
Meanwhil, Primo continues his descent into madness after John Paul’s counteroffer of $600 plus expenses to his ransom demand of $17 million. Primo is so mad that he just wants to kill Paul, but he returns to find that his “billion dollar boy” is on the run. As he’s about to kill the remaining man who let Paul and Angelo get away, Primo’s superiors, including the Don of the region, show up. Primo tells the Don that “he’s done a runner,” and the true power of the Mafia in this area of the world is revealed. Church bells ring and everyone gathers in the town square of the nearest village. The Don not only offers a reward for his lost property, but warns the townspeople that those who harbor the escapees will be killed. As if that’s not intense enough, Angelo tells Paul that his family is now doomed. They will be shunned until the day they die.
Just when you think this whole episode might be in the mountains, we cut to Gail and Fletcher in Rome. She regrets letting him make the $600 offer, and she goes on TV to beg the kidnappers to make some sort of contact just so she’ll know her son is still alive. It’s cruel not to do so.
While Gail Getty’s panic grows, Paul and Angelo struggle to survive. They find blackberries in the woods, but they’re not ripe enough to provide sustenance. They almost get caught, but ditch their chasers in a small riverbed. They run up a steep hill as we hear the sound of a train horn, and it looks like they might not make the jump, especially as Angelo falls and Paul rescues him. They’ve now both saved each other’s lives. And Paul promises to take Angelo all the way to New York.
After revealing that he’s going to go after Angelo’s family — they really are the ties that bind on Trust — Primo finds his betrayer’s glasses on the tracks. “Who do we know on the trains?” he asks, revealing that even this path out of Calabria won’t work. Primo wants to kill Getty, but Don Salvatore wants him alive. Primo doesn’t think any of the Don’s plans are big enough, captured in a telling scene in which he says he doesn’t just want a percentage of the Getty fortune. He wants to be the Gettys.
Angelo and Paul wake up on the train, but they’re yet again on the verge of capture. As flashlights and voices break the night, they jump off and run into the darkness. Paul wants to find a house, a phone, and food, but Angelo understands the danger in that. He warns that everyone will try to kill them. Paul can’t take it anymore and they find their way into a small village that’s totally deserted — everyone is out looking for them. They find their way into a house and Paul makes a call to his mom. Just as Gail answers, Primo and his crew show up, forcing the boys to run again. Primo picks up the phone and mocks Gail, saying “17 million dollars” before he hangs up. Understandably, this pushes Gail over the edge, and she cuts her hair short while having flashbacks of the last time she saw her son, whom she may never see him again.
In the final scenes of “Silenzio,” Paul and Angelo hitch a ride to what seems like it should be a safe haven. A kindly old couple takes them in, and someone who reminds Angelo of his nonna makes them a meal. Paul senses the danger first, but doesn’t act. When they tell him that the phone lines went out in a storm, he remarks that there hasn’t been one recently. Clearly, these people are trying to keep Angelo and Paul there until Primo can get there. But Angelo and Paul fall under the spell of people who seem to have nothing but are willing to give them whatever they have. We see the woman in the other room praying as the boys drink more brandy and eat more food. And then Primo busts down the door, says “That’s all, folks,” and blasts Angelo’s brains all over his new best friend. We hear another shot and cut to Gail in her kitchen, where she drops a glass. She can’t explain it, but she knows something horrible just happened.
• This episode pulls back on the music cues compared to the previous four, but it does include “Nadie Me Ama” by Mina when Primo makes paper airplanes in his car.
• “Silenzio” is the shortest episode so far, almost 20 minutes shorter than the season premiere.
• The episode was written by Alice Nutter, who was a part of the band Chumbawamba for almost a quarter of a century. That’s her doing the female vocals on “Tubthumping.”
• We’re halfway done! What do you want or expect from the second half? Who’s your MVP of the first half? Fraser and Sutherland are good, but I’d go with Harris Dickinson. His performance has driven the show so far.