20° ShorTSIFF – Diary of 1 july 2019

Once on holiday in San Candido in Val Pusteria, on the cusp of the Austrian Dolomites, the writer met Vittorio Gassman. He no longer had the world in his hand as in his youth, the depression he wrote about was literally consuming him and yet, in the few minutes of conversation he gave me, his eyes lit up a couple of times with boyish enthusiasm. We were talking about Cinema, the one with a capital C, and the powerful charm of the Seventh Art was prevailing proudly over the evils of living.

Many colourful young people represent the splendid sun of this twentieth edition of our Festival, it is a pleasure to see them so full of adrenaline, with a passionate desire to learn.

Great success for the 24 HOURS SHORTS COMICS MARATHON procured by Francesco Cappellotto, an exciting adventure that demonstrates its potent social and cultural value.

We are then in the scalding space of Piazza Verdi, waiting for the cinematic images to envelop us like the tentacles of a friendly octopus.

Then, a real “parade of youth” on stage, accompanied by Chiara Valenti Omero and Francesco Ruzzier: they are the young actors – actors of the CIAK LAB project, directed by Francesco Filippi.

ORGOGLIO ALIENO, the title of their collective effort, succeeds and convinces the audience of the beautiful moral message inherent in the work.

The glittering and surreal bathers of the strange beach of CIRCUIT created by Delia Hess then arrive disarmingly; almost an idealised, animated planet, hypnotically suspended on its own alien matter.

RISE OF A STAR presents itself with the immortal notes of the Bolero by Maurice Ravel. A very special work on the private life of a young and successful dancer, who discovers she is pregnant and fears that this beautiful event may represent the end of her artistic career. A female story, however, directed by a man, the French James Bort.

How debauched are the cyclists born from the imagination of the Croatian director Vejko Popovic… they are engaged in uncontrollable sexual acts but there are also politicians on an Adamite line and other characters who are not inclined to worship modesty. Very funny, the title is CYCLISTS.

A parable on female emancipation and also a chronicle the unexpected demands of the acting world: THE ROLE directed by director Faarnosti Samad deals with such themes.

COSÌ IN TERRA by the young Italian author Pier Lorenzo Pisano is rendered highly striking by solid and sensitive acting of Roberto Citran, known by the public as loving theatre and the most introspective of cinema. This bitter story of faith and suicide, rarefied and white as the stones that welcome it, contains a diverse filmic substance that refers to Francesco Rosi and to our social-rural cinema in general.

THE THWARTED by the Vasseur duo – Terragno acts as a kind of room with a view on manipulations: characters in flesh and blood surrounded by colored paper environments, in constant movement.

YOU IDIOT, coming all the way from Singapore, is a teenage chronicle. Its music is a unifying element, depicting two guys who look out on life, looking towards their sweetest dreams. It is directed by Kris Ong.

THE DIVINE WAY is a strange and fascinating visual labyrinth: stairs upon stairs, endless steps crossed by feet that never tire of a young woman; a clear homage to Dante’s dream of descending into hell. It is a work that entrusts a prominent role to the décor. Behind the camera, our Ilaria Di Carlo.

Claudius Gentinetta’s SELFIES transports us to a centrifugal chaos where cellular images dominate, engulfing the man and forcing him into a morbid virtual connection.

Finally, icing on the cake, the short by Mael Le Mée lights the screen: in his short film AURORE, adolescents are struggling with their first sexual urges, However the eponymous female protagonist seems to hide hers, a terrifying nature that differentiates it from that of her friends’. A romantic ending, which we shan’t reveal!

As we stroll back past the Molo Audace, we look upon the pier full of young people bathing in the summer heat – a beautiful scene. The night evening a beautiful woman, and she is our friend tonight.

See you on Tuesday evening.

Riccardo Vistin

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