by Arnaldo Casali
The Terni Film Festival turns 13 and enters its adolescence: that imperfect age suspended between childhood and youth, exuberance and fragility, of the growth in steps that are always inadequate: too big to be small, too small to be big.
Like a teenager, our festival is full of enthusiasm and insecurity, potentials and risks, ready to make the big leap that can lead to the summit or into the abyss and, being a teenager, it resembles our staff and our audience.
Hence, for nine days the adolescent festival will be talking about adolescence through dreams, hopes, ideals, anger, friendship, creativity but also sexual identity, bullying and anorexia.
We will talk about adolescence in Islamic and Jewish culture. We will remember young people who have sacrificed their lives for great ideals, like Jan Palach and Peppino Impastato. But we will also mention a great priest who dedicated all his life to children: Don Lorenzo Milani, and two extraordinary adolescents such as Francesco d’Assisi (and Caterina Tramazzoli alias mother Eletta.
We will talk about art and big dreams with a trilogy dedicated to dance: at the opening and closing of the festival will show two films dedicated to girls who dream of becoming balerinas: L’età imperfetta [The imperfect age] by Ulysses Lendaro and In punta di piedi [On tiptoe] by Alessandro D’Alatri. While through a short film entitled Inner flame, we will tell a story of a deaf Israeli girl who wants to join a dance academy.
The career award will be given to a young director who has dedicated her entire work to adolescence: Alice Rohrwacher, whose all films will be screened during the festival.
This year the “Gastone Moschin” award will go to a literally invisible teenager: Marialuna Cipolla, a singer who at the age of only 19 was nominated for the David di Donatello award for a film about a teenage superhero: Il ragazzo invisibile [The invisible boy] by Gabriele Salvatores. Another young man from Terni, Mattia Bianchini, is the author of a delicate short film entitled Uomo [Man] presenting a relationship between an adolescent and a young mother, to whom Valentina Lodovini gives her face.
Among our most awaited guests is Terence Hill, who will present his film focused on the friendship between a man and a girl; he will also receive the Angel for the career.
Tis year the Festival inaugurates two new sections alongside the traditional films categories: “Come ci vedete” [As you can see] is reserved for short films created by immigrants living in Italy and “L’età imperfetta” [The imperfect age] in which young people talk about young people and are judged by their peers.
After the first meeting in Barcelona in 2016 and the second in Trento in 2017, Terni Film Festival will hosts the third international meeting of the interreligious film festivals directors from, among others, Catalonia, Slovakia, Bangladesh, Argentina, Poland, France, Armenia and Ukraine. This year the festival’s focus is on Nigeria and with songs, dances, and an ethnic dinner. There will be also a meeting dedicated to the trafficking of prostitutes, and one with Nigerian basketball players who contribute to the successes of the Italian national team.
As always, the films standing for competition come from different parts of the world: from the United States to Iran, from Egypt to Kenya via Turkey, Saudi Arabia, Spain, Israel, India, Syria. Among the many guests to take turns on our stage at Politeama there are: Jerzy Stuhr, Guglielmo Poggi, Paolo Genovese, Marina Occhionero, Ulisse Lendaro, Alessandro D’Alatri, Annalisa Aglioti, Elisabetta Pellini, Adelmo Togliani, Gaia De Laurentiis, Angelo Longoni, Krzysztof Zanussi, Massimiliano Coccia, Lucilla Galeazzi, Massimiliano Bruno and a comic icon of our adolescence: Gegia.