“I am working on a few projects of films that are not set in Salento but they won’t let me make them. One takes place in Alto Adige and is about the Italo-German conflict; another is set in Africa and is on the massacre of Ethiopians after the attack by general Graziani”, sais director Edoardo Winspeare, who presented the comedy La vita in Comune, competing in the section Orizzonti, already released in cinemas and filmed in Depressa (Depressed), a little town in Salento where the director lives. In the film the town is called Disperata (Desperate), and the atmosphere is that of a small southern town forgotten by God. The mayor, a timid and sad man, does his institutional duty with great effort, hardly sitting through the municipal meeting. To compensate his frustration, he takes poetry lessons given by local jail inmates. On the other hand the two brothers, small time criminals with the unachieved dream of becoming the bosses of the area, experience enlightenment thanks to poetry, finding beauty in nature. The mayor is influenced by this unexpected change at the point of proposing the creation of a small zoo to revive the town. Something is happening in the community of Disperata, the town appears to be experiencing the beginning of a rebirth. 

“In the end, Disperata is just one of the many small forgotten towns of Italy, inhabited by chaotic, poetic people, dreamers. After all, the periphery is richer of more original and authentic people”, according to the filmmaker. The film cast is almost like a family because it includes Celeste Casciano, the director’s wife, Gustavo Greco, Winspeare partner in the production house Saietta Film, Antonio Carluccio and Claudio Giangreco, a gardener and a house painter, already cast in previous movies by Winspeare, and Davide Riso, who plays the clerk in a supermarket.

“I like to narrate serious topics with a light style, La vita in comune comes from In grazia di Dio, a more dramatic film. This time it’s a utopia film where the spectator is immersed in a world both real and fable-like”. The director partially identifies with the character of the mayor, specifically because of his shyness, and because he plays a figure almost abused of. In his film Winspeare criticizes the much abused concept, in the south of Italy, of development. “All the politicians speak of progress, never of progress. We need a cultural and environmental change, because there is no awareness of the beauty of our landscape, that in the south is mostly ruined”. Once again the director displays his love for the Salento region through film. “Years ago I had a romantic attitude towards this land, typical of a foreigner who comes here for the first time. With time I have become more ironical and light”.