Anyone eager to know the identity of the author known as Elena Ferrante might be disappointed by this documentary, which respects the writer’s professed desire to remain anonymous. This is a noble choice by filmmaker Giacomo Durzi, though his other choices are largely dissatisfying. The movie overflows with adulation for Ferrante’s work, focusing on her fans and, in particular, the New York City literati that turned Ferrante’s books into statement pieces found in many a hip reader’s tote bag. Talking heads include Ann Goldstein, who has translated several of Ferrante’s novels from their original Italian into English, and contemporary authors like Elizabeth Strout and Jonathan Franzen, who relish in peeling back the layers of Ferrante’s rich sentences, characters, and themes. Their comments are worthwhile, though Durzi offers little reason why they should exist in a cinematic medium. He keeps his subject at a long, shadowy distance, using scribbly animation and bland B-roll of New York City to fill in gaps between interviews. Mostly, the film inspires in the viewer an urge to read the books instead. In English and Italian with subtitles.