Italo arrives in cinemas and tells the true story of a dog that becomes a hero
by Vittoria Scarpa
- The debut film by Alessia Scarso is released in 200 theatres via Notorious Pictures. Other releases this week are Hungry Hearts, The Theory of Everything and Exodus
Can a dog become an honorary citizen of a town? Watching Italo [+see also:
film profile], Alessia Scarso’s debut movie, it seems so. However, what appears to be a fable is, in reality, a true story: that of a stray dog adopted by an entire Sicilian town, Scicli (a province of Ragusa), who became the extraordinary protagonist of this community. This is a story that the director wanted to bring to the big screen because “as a Sicilian, it really struck me”. “In 2009 a group of stray dogs in the Scicli countryside attacked a young boy killing him. It was then that a campaign against stray dogs began. The mayor however, decided to protect Italo, a mongrel that had been around the town for a long time, by adopting him on behalf of the people”, said Scarso at the screening of the movie in Rome. “All because he was a special dog. Every morning he went to mass, and then he escorted the kids to school. Whenever he recognised tourists, he would accompany them around. One night he even saved a waitress from an attack while on her way home”. The true story of this dog that died in 2011 is intertwined in Alessia Scarso’s film with the fictional story of the three “human” protagonists, Marco Bocci (hero of the TV series Squadra Antimafia (Antimafia Squad), in his first lead role on the big screen), Elena Radonicich, Barbara Tabita, and ten-year-old children. A film for all the family produced by Roberta Trovato for the Arà company and launched today in theatres by Notorious Pictures (200 copies).
The other Italian release this week is a different genre: the long-awaited Hungry Hearts [+see also:
interview: Saverio Costanzo
film profile] by Saverio Costanzo, winner of a double Coppa Volpi at the last Venice Film Festival for actors, Alba Rohrwacher and Adam Driver. This worrying and dramatic psychotic tale of a couple following the birth of their son finally arrives in cinemas with 01 Distribution (115 theatres). The third national release is the comedy Banana [+see also:
film profile] by Andrea Jublin (2008 Oscar nominee with the short film The Substitute), the story of a teenager who would love to play the most fantastic football, Brazilian, but suffering from a handicap, his “banana foot”, focuses on another important endeavour: to help his classmate, with whom he’s in love, to pass her exams (Good Films, 10 theatres).
The other novelties this week are all European: the British film The Theory of Everything [+see also:
film profile] by James Marsh, a biopic about the extraordinary life of scientist Stephen Hawking, which recently earned the Golden Globe for Best Actor for its protagonist, English Eddie Redmayne (read the news - Universal Pictures, 300 theatres); and the French animation film Asterix: the Land of the Gods [+see also:
film profile] by Alexandre Astier and Louis Clichy (Koch Media, 300 theatres). They’ll have to battle it out with Ridley Scott’s spectacular movie, Exodus: Gods and Kings, the story of Moses and of his struggle against Egyptian Pharaoh Ramses, with Christian Bale and Joel Edgerton, a UK/US production launched in over 600 theatres by 20th Century Fox.
(Translated from Italian)