Archive for May 29th, 2011

29/05/2011

Corpo Celeste, Heavenly Body

by Marianne Wi

Director, Alice Rohrwacher is the screenwriter and director of this her first feature film, she has a very famous older sibling Alba, they were both born in Firenze by an Italian mother and German father, I have a feeling we will see a lot more from this younger member of the Rohrwacher family. Corpo Celeste was first presented at Cannes Film Festival 2011 receiving good reviews and will be at The Taormina Film Festival later in June 2011, it has received 3 nominations for The Silver Ribbon, Il Nastro d’argento, Best Director Newcomer for Alice Rohrwacher and two for Best Supporting Actress Anita Capriol, who plays the mother and Yle Vianello for her role as Marta, personally I would have liked Pasqualina Scuncia to have received a nomination for her role as Santa, she was awesome giving a solid, heartfelt and well-played performance, most of all she had a lived in face, excellent casting for her role. I was lucky to see this film, it was only shown in Catania for a week nowhere else in Sicily, I sort of understand why, it really is everyday life in the South, there would be little interest in seeing what virtually amounts to a Docudrama for many people here, at a price of 7 Euros. I saw Corpo Celeste with a German friend who has lived in Catania for 40 years, she positively hated the film and saw no purpose for its existence, 2 years ago I would have though it patronising with too many caricatures, a bit of a cheap shot at the south, today I think it is a very accurate portrayal of life in the South, there is always a Saint that needs to be aired, a Madonna that needs to be resting at someones house for a day or 2, while the ladies of the Church gather to sing her on her way, I think Corpo Celeste, will do very well on the International scene, a gutsy first film from Rohrwacher the Younger.

Cast :   Yle Vianello, Anita Caprioli, Pasqualina Scuncia, Salvatore Cantalupe, Renato Carpentieri, Paola Lavini

Synobsis : Marta, a 13 year old introverted adolescent has recently relocated to Calabria, Southern Italy with her older sister and mother, after 10 years in Switzerland. We follow her search for a part to play in this deeply religious neighborhood, with its bleak dilapidated exterior, poverty and petty crime. The church is the centre of everyday life in the south, Marta must prepare herself for her confirmation, she attend catechism classes run by the local Catholic Church, Santa runs these classes like a pop-quize, she does her utmost under very difficult circumstances to spread the word and prepare these youngsters for the big day “seeing the Spirit is like wearing really cool sunglasses”. On an unscheduled away day with the Priest, to a derelict and deserted village, collecting an obsolite Jesus, while making various stop-overs in the small villages drumming up signatures for his promotion to a more important church, Marta gets her first period adding to her problems. The scene in the church where Marta sensually explore a wooden and very dusty Jesus was excellent, Marta is a girl of few words yet her questioning of the church does not go down well, Jesus goes flying off the cliff perhaps because he was angry or was he mad as some people have told her…… If you are looking for a glimpse of southern Italy today, this is a film for you .


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