20° ShorTSIFF – Diary of 4 july 2019

A large helping of cinema in the crucial days of the ShorTS International Film Festival, the 20th edition.

While the sun, as a good guardian of the underworld, still keeps us under his heel, here we are at the Miela Theatre to see the short films that were scheduled for the previous evening.

Let’s start with an all-female story, one born from the imagination of the authors Kotecka and Poryzata with their short TIMES. We are within an adolescent filmic painting, where acrobatics and the competitive world in general are a background for the chronicle of the anxieties of youth. Very touching scenes of emotional conflict between girls.

The psychological tale of CENA D’ARAGOSTE unfolds in an anonymous Italian city; it should be an opportunity for a meeting between two boys and the mother of one of them but the banquet turns into an outlet for mutual weaknesses and aggression; directed by Gregorio Franchetti.

Claudio Baglioni, in his songs dedicated to the Russian astronaut, described the stars as the freckles of God; a piece of that poem is also contained in GAGARIN, MI MANCHERAI by Domenico De Orsi, which begins as a depiction of a couple and then takes the road of unpredictability.

An authentic orgy of colours, lights, sounds and an afternoon nightmare inside the Portuguese couple Afonso and Madail’s DON’T FEED THESE ANIMALS. A fable of the absurd with a carrot and a laboratory rabbit that results in complete hilarity.

The things that belong to us, physical or spiritual, sometimes can sometimes abandon us in bad taste by dropping the dangerous bomb of nostalgia. 27 FLOORS by Alvaro Rivera focuses on these narrative modules describing the peculiar loss of a building that is a symbol of a piece of our life.

FIRE MOUTH by Luciano Perez Fernandez: Brazil is a country that has always honoured football as if it were a real divinity; FIRE MOUTH is the parable of a tightrope walker on the sporting airwaves.

SWAMP by Juan Sebastian Mesa is a work of Latin origin about a child and his grim excavation work; as always the reminiscences draw on a strongly symbolic universe where he buries his innocence.

BLESS YOU! by the young Polish author Paulina Zialkowska is an animated short film on the unpredictable scans of everyday behaviour; the author graduated from the famous film school in Lodz where Roman Polanski was born.

HUNGER KEEPS WALKING by Giulio Canella is a disturbing story of the naked body in the mirror, of how fantasy can give birth to another in and of itself and allow an escape from reality with unpredictable consequences.

An inexplicable attraction is at the centre of F**K DIFFERENT by David Barbieri. A disco playboy finds himself inexorably drawn to a girl with a body that is not exactly Apollonian; he is dismayed, doubtful but finally gives in …

WOMEN UNSEEN by Omar Daher Gullen would seem at first to be a romantic story but we go on to witness the construction of a cathedral of blood and death; indebted to the masters of horror, we witness a public garden invaded by the living dead (or presumed as much).

20:30 exactly: there is time for a walk to Piazza Verdi while a colourful and international crowd immortalises with their smartphones the joyful froth of the sea by the pier. Next up, a work full of social significance with the director of the film Alessio Cremonini: ON MY SKIN – THE LAST SEVEN DAYS OF STEFANO CUCCHI. The director won the Cinema of the Present Award, with obvious excitement from the author and the public.

Happy not to have a moment’s respite, we then lose ourselves to the suspense at the airport with Ali Asgari’s DELAY. The terrible hypothesis of a child rape or attempted rape emerges, but as often happens, reality can be a crazy variable.

Two darlings of the Trieste public, Ariella Reggio and Lino Guanciale are respectively grandmother and granddaughter in PEPITAS by Alessandro Sampaoli. A young man hides his homosexuality and his secret job as drag queen, however the elderly relative will show an unexpected sensitivity. Delicious.

Italy also rides high with the short film GLI ARCIDIAVOLI by Lorenzo Pullega, a satire of corporate circles and authorities cooked in a typical Emilian sauce and featuring actors known to the public such as Andrea Roncato.

THE DEATH OF DON QUIXOTE by Miguel Faus speaks of the theatre and roles within it, of the atavistic confusion between reality and fiction, capturing everything with a severe black and white.

A PLACE CALLED HOME by Isabella Brunacker poses disturbing questions about time and uses an accurate minimalist interpretation.

Can you be addicted to Coca Cola? The sympathetic protagonist of the animated comic COLAHOLIC by Marcin Podolec bears witness to it: he literally drowns in the drink (famously sung about by Vasco Rossi) and for him it is a continuous punishment even if he speaks of it in auto-ironic terms.

No caustic or mocking element, however, for Aw See Wee’s KAMPUNG TAPIR; there are two descriptive elements to the work: the crisis of a young couple and the martyrdom of an almost extinct animal.

BAUTISMO by Mauro Vecchi is a violent reportage from the bad lands of the suburban regions, where absurd rules of power and abuses coexist; the final purifying wash has a religious and evocative value.

MYCELIUM from the German Justus Toussaint touches on very sensitive sentimental journeys, especially when those who sleep next to you prefigure your death through a dream. Who is responsible for it? Who will pay the consequences?

The aforementioned Polanski would have liked the female figure trapped within her own world of EVERYTHING CALMS DOWN by Virginia Scaro. In a climate reminiscent of REPULSION by the Polish director, this claustrophobic thriller takes place with a young woman as the protagonist who will have to resort to using every resource, with a unique ending.

A very rich and still warm evening, there is a desire for ice cream or anything that represents the cold.

We meet again Friday evening.

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