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Three Italian films have been selected in competition at the 75th Venice International Film Festival (August 29 – September 9): Capri-Revolution, the new film by Mario Martone, is set in 1914. Italy is about to go to war while a commune of North Europeans has found on Capri the ideal place to live their lives and practise their art. But the island has its own powerful identity, in the person of a young woman, a goatherd named Lucia (Marianna Fontana). The film describes the encounter between Lucia and the commune, headed by Seybu (Reinout Scholten van Aschat), who lives according to the principles of complete freedom. Artistic Director Alberto Barbera defined it as “a sort of ideal conclusion of a trilogy, through which Martone succeeds in conveying the sense of an era, a crucial moment for Italian history, and at the same time of its failure.” As largely predicted, the competition features Luca Guadagnino’s Suspiria too, loosely adapted from the masterpiece by Dario Argento. “A remake that is first and foremost the most ambitious film by Guadagnino, sought and thought for years, starring an impressive cast including Tilda Swinton who plays three roles, two of which are absolutely unrecognizable.” Set in Germany in the ‘70s, the film focuses on an American dancer who enrolls at the Tanz Akademie to attend its prestigious dance classes. When a few girls disappear, she finds out that the schoold, founded by a powerful and evil witch, is just a cover for the study of occult sciences. Besides Swinton, the cast include Dakota Johnson, Chloe Grace Moretz, Mia Goth and Jessica Harper (who was in the original Dario Argento’s film as well). The soundtrack is composed by Thom Yorke. The third Italian film in competition is the Italo-American documentary What You Gonna Do When the World’s on Fire by Roberto Minervini, the story of a community of black people in the American South during the summer 2017, when a string of brutal killings of black men sent shockwaves throughout the country. A meditation on the state of race in America, this film is an intimate portrait into the lives of those who struggle for justice, dignity, and survival in a country not on their side.

Out of competition, among the special screenings, the first two episodes of Saverio Costanzo’s L’amica geniale, the TV series adapted from the novels by Elena Ferrante. Among the documentaries, Isis, Tomorrow. The Lost Souls of Mosul by Francesca Mannocchi and Alessio Romerzi; 1938 Diversi by Giorgio Treves, “an impressive film on the enactment of race laws in Italy in which we find echoes of a present that we’d rather confine to the past.” Among the feature films, Roberto Andò’s Una storia senza nome and Valeria Bruni Tedeschi’s autobiographical Les Estivants.

In the Orizzonti Section, Alessio Cremonini’s Sulla mia pelle recounts the last six days in the life of Stefano Cucchi and the week that changed the life of his family forever: “an impressive work, built with honesty and strong social commitment, with a superb performance by Alessandro Borghi.” In Orizzonti again, Ciro D’Emilio’s Un giorno all’improvviso, “one of those debuts that shouldn’t be overlooked”, and Emanuele Scaringi’s La profezia dell’armadillo, adapted from the graphic novel by Zerocalcare. Starring Simone Liberati, Pietro Castellitto, Laura Morante, Valerio Aprea, Claudia Pandolfi, Teco Celio and Diana Del Bufalo, the film is Fandango production with Rai Cinema. In the Orizzonti’s short film program, Sara Fgaier’s Gli anni and Isabella Torre’s Ninfe in competition, and Blu by Massimo D’Anolfi and Martina Parenti out of competition.

Biennale College features Margherita Ferri’s Zen sul ghiaccio sottile, while Sconfini (the former “Cinema nel Giardino” section) include Il banchiere anarchico by Giulio Base, Arrivederci Saigon by Wilma Labate, Il ragazzo più felice del mondo by Gipi and Camorra by Francesco Patierno.

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VENEZIA 75

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