by Federico Ferrone, Michele Manzolini
Fiction | Italy | Italian | 70’ | 2019
In 1941, an Italian soldier is leaving for the Soviet front. The Fascist army is allied with the Nazi war machine. Victory seems close. The convoy moves forward, men are singing and hopeful. The soldier’s mind goes back to the melancholic fairy tales his Russian mother told him. Unlike his younger companions, he has already been to war, in Africa, and he fears it. The train crosses Europe, reaching the interminable expanses of the Ukrainian plains. As winter arrives, enthusiasm wanes under the first mortar shells, the cold and the snow. The most heartfelt desire is no longer victory, but rather a warm bed, food, and to go back home. The immense wind ravaged steppe seems to be inhabited by ghosts.
Production Countries: Italy
Original Language: Italian, Russian
Director: Federico Ferrone, Michele Manzolini
Script: Federico Ferrone, Michele Manzolini, Wu Ming 2
Cinematography: Andrea Vaccari
Editor: Maria Fantastica Valmori
Sound Design & Music: Simonluca Leitempergher
Federico Ferrone (1981) and Michele Manzolini (1980) have worked together since 2007. Their work is focused on the creative use of found footage in films at the crossroads between archive, documentary and fiction. Their films have been selected, among others, at the Venice, Karlovy Vary, Visions du Réel, Torino and DocLisboa film festivals.
FESTIVALS and Awards
Mostra del Cinema di Venezia
Festival du film Italien de Annecy – Special Mention
Jihlava Documentary International Film Festival