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December 5 & December 12, 2016

Gianfranco Rosi's Fire at Sea

Gianfranco Rosi (b. 1964) is an Italian documentary maker whose thought-provoking films have generated a growing amount of attention internationally for revealing worlds hiding in plain sight, whether a community of dropouts in the California desert (Below Sea Level [2008]) or a Mexican hit man calmly recounting his crimes in a motel room (El Sicario, Room 164 [2010]). A daring, riveting work requiring both his and the viewer’s deep participation, his latest film returns him to Italy, where he attempts to take the measure of a crisis that is everywhere in the media but hard to see clearly, even at its front lines: the migration of refugees from Africa and the Middle East across the Mediterranean Sea. – David Pendleton


Monday December 5 at 7pm
Monday December 12 at 7pm

Fire at Sea (Fuocoammare)

Directed by Gianfranco Rosi
Italy 2016, DCP, color, 110 min. Italian with English subtitles

Rosi filmed Fire at Sea on the Sicilian island of Lampedusa, the southernmost part of Italy and the goal of many trying to escape poverty or violence by emigrating to Europe. As Rosi’s patient eye observes in intensive detail the Italian Coast Guard intercepting ships overloaded with people, his absorbing film reveals the human side to this crisis, yet the director does not pretend to be able to fully convey the experience of the refugee. Meanwhile, the Italian authorities do what they can to sequester the grim reality from the daily life of Lampedusa. Hence, the director elects two Sicilian characters to guide viewers through the harrowing crisis. One is the only doctor on Lampedusa, who is therefore charged with examining every rescued migrant; the other is Samuele, the nine-year-old son of a fisherman. Though sheltered from the crisis, he nevertheless senses the anguish of what is happening just offshore. DCP courtesy Kino Lorber.

 

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