In the slum, finding themselves
by Camillo De Marco
- In his third feature length film, Giorgio Diritti focuses on a young woman in the Amazon going through a crisis, between uncontaminated nature and misery.
The great prophet from On the Road, by Jack Kerouac, wrote that "we need to go and not stop until we have arrived. Where, I don’t know, but we need to go." For the main character in There Will Come a Day [+see also:
interview: Giorgio Diritti
film profile], Augusta, leaving is a need. She has lost a son and was abandoned by her husband. This stab to the soul means she needs to go and find herself, which involves losing herself first. Her catholic upbringing pushes her to follow Sister Franca, a friend of her mother’s, on a mission to the Amazon. There, she discovers a whole new world – made of a strong and pure nature on the one side, and profound underdevelopment on the other. And religion is not the immediate response that one might expect it to be.
There Will Come a Day is Giorgio Diritti’s third feature film. His film debut The Wind Blows Round [+see also:
film profile] in 2005, was a resounding success: presented in sixty film festivals and awarded forty times over. His 2009 film, The Man Who Will Come [+see also:
interview: Giorgio Diritti
film profile] was awarded the top prize at the Rome Festival. In The Wind Blows Round, a French professor settles in a valley community in Piedmont. The Man Who Will Come is seen through the eyes of a child in an Apennines village in 1944 who witnesses the 1944 Nazi massacres of Marzabotto. In There Will Come a Day, Augusta, played by Jasmine Trinca, ties herself to the comunidad of a Manaus favela, the capital of the Brazilian state of Amazonas. The relationship between an individual and a collective is renewed. Just like in The Man Who Will Come, women, sisters, mothers and girls are the backbone of society, while men escape responsibility. Back in Italy, Augusta’s mother (Anne Alvaro) and grandmother (Sonia Gessner) await her return with Saint Romedio, North West Trentino in the background. An Italian doctor told Augusta that "if you want to change things, you’ve got to go where things need to be changed" and she distances herself from religious men and women whom she calls "professionals of the spirit." As she travels along the Rio of the Amazon in a boat called "Itinerante" (itinerant), Augusta reads Waiting for God by Simone Weil, a collection of writings representing a spasmodic search for truth – testimony of a profound spiritual vocation and in-depth criticism of Christianity, incapable of absolving its exercise of spiritual guide in a time of darkness.
In the initial part of There Will Come a Day, Roberto Cimatti captures uncontaminated nature outside of time. He captures the profiles of locals, who smile without having anything to sell, and ask what Christ wanted to save humanity from. Following this, the director, who has made a few documentaries on the Amazon in the past, captures misery. Children are sold onto the organ trafficking market, mayors destroy barracks, deporting inhabitants to cement beehives. The director shows them to us, in the middle of a nocturnal waltz on a football pitch, just before a devastating rainfall. But Augusta cannot save them and she finds herself on the side of a deserted river close to delirium, like Christopher McCandless in Into the Wild. Maybe there is a possibility for a different existence, given to each and everyone of us.
(Translated from Italian)