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FESTIVALS Italy

La Marca makes debut at Pesaro

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For his debut film La terramadre (“Motherearth”), Nello La Marca took inspiration above all from some ambitious models: the films of Gianni Amelio and Luchino Visconti’s The Earth Trembles. The film, in competition and makings its national premiere at the Pesaro Film Festival (after screenings in this year’s Berlinale Forum), interweaves two stories of immigration against the backdrop of the Sicilian town of Palma di Montechiaro, undergoing an economic crisis.

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Born in the Agrigento region (not far from the setting of his film), the director later moved to Palermo and along with co-screenwriters Evelina Santangelo and Sandro Dieli tried to “reconstruct the collective identity of the territory, drawing upon the stories of its inhabitants.”

In the film, two parallel stories are destined to meet – that of Gaetano, a young Sicilian who doesn’t want to follow his father to Mannheim, and Alì, an illegal immigrant who nearly drowns off the island’s coast.

The two characters recount today’s Italy (a destination for many and a land from which to flee for others) and for La Marca are also “the metaphor of an existential condition of all contemporary mankind, which cannot orient its future”.

Shot in HDcam by Tarek Ben Abdallah, and later blown up to 35mm, the film is one of three projects (along with Wim Wenders’ The Palermo Shooting [+see also:
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and Pasquale Scimeca’s Rosso malpelo) financed with monies allotted to the region of Sicily by the European Union.

“My budget was more limited,” said La Marca of the €500,000 allocated for La terramadre, which is set for a domestic release in late September.

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(Translated from Italian)

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