Big Hollywood names but also movies with a deep meaning and current themes. This is Venice, and the first day here just confirmed it.
For the “Orizzonti” section, this 75th Venice Film Festival opens with “On my skin” directed by Alessio Cremonini, focusing on the last, dramatic days of Stefano Cucchi. The film will be available on Netflix from the 12th of September.
“On My Skin”
Behind and in Front of the Camera
The one to give voice to the tragically known story of Stefano Cucchi is Alessio Cremonini, a director who has a history with the Festival, taking part with a short movie to the movie in episodes “I Corti Italiani,” which was presented in 1997. After directing “Border” in 2013, a movie in Arabic on the Syrian War, Alessio quickly focused his interest in documentaries on the Cucchi case, giving life to a realistic movie that succeeds in telling the facts without openly taking sides but just showing what happened, leaving the audience actually free to provide its own interpretation of this.
As the protagonist we find Alessandro Borghi, the “presenter” of the last edition of the Venice Film Festival and an actor who really transforms himself into the boy, giving him a voice at last.
At his side, we find Jasmine Trinca as Stefano’s sister, Ilaria Cucchi, while Max Tortora and Milvia Marigliano are the parents.
Who’s Got the Typewriter
Together with Cremonini, the young author Lisa Nur Sultan also contributed to the writing, in which they manage to convey a narration that is both rough and straightforward and that puts us in front of the facts without the possibility to close our eyes anymore.
What to Know (ABSOLUTELY NO SPOILERS)
The documentary and realistic aspects of this movie really allow everyone to understand everything that happened: more precisely the death, still without a culprit, of Stefano Cucchi, a young man who after being arrested was placed under custody and died because of numerous injuries. The movie shows the last days of Stefano, from the night of the arrest to the day of his death, always keeping a close eye on the boy and his family.
What You’ll Need
The film tells a story that is difficult to accept, both from an external point of view and from the eyes of those who lived it, so you’ll need attention and to be in the right place to face the film. You won’t need to know the whole story to understand the movie but, for those who always followed it on the news, it will probably make things worse, since it gives you more awareness on the reality. For how much this could seem contradictory, this movie makes feel real what can come through as distant and unreal in the news.
What They Say
Alessandro Borghi: “Everything that has been told was reported by the witnesses, they are all reliable reconstruction. The story is a quite objective representation of the facts.”
Alessio Cremonini: “We studied 10.000 reports, with humility and in an almost ‘selfless‘ way, to learn without prejudices, to understand what happened to Stefano, searching for a person’s state of mind through witnessing words. Those witnessing words that turn paper into flesh. One of the testimonies of the brawl was surely on Stefano’s skin, and also in this way paper becomes skin, because among the pieces of evidence there’s his flesh too. We defend civil rights because movies are not a Court, movies tell stories.
In our movie, there’s a closed door: it’s there because it’s only right that we don’t come to know what happened through a movie, it’s the magistrate’s job to tell us what happened behind that door. The movie tells the story of a boy that went through ten critic days, it’s not a stone thrown at the police force. The movie accuses the lack of respect towards Stefano, not Justice.”
One Last Thing…
As we already said, “On My Skin” is profoundly realistic, borderline documentary speaking of the actors’ performances, and this is its strength, proving the real power of art and going where justice itself couldn’t make it. If legal ways make it impossible for truth to come out until everything has been proven, art uses its own expressivity to work backward, presenting the whole fact and hoping, sooner or later, to reach the truth.
Out of 5 Lions (Venice Edition)