Ferrario places Christ behind bars
by Camillo de Marco
02/04/2009 - A musical set in prison with a digression on the passion of Christ. What sounds like folly is actually Tutta Colpa di Giuda [trailer] (“All Giulia’s Fault”), the latest film by Davide Ferrario, a rigorously independent director who achieved international success in 2004 with After Midnight [film focus], produced by his company Rossofuoco on a low budget.
After spending time in Milan’s San Vittore Prison, where he held lessons in video editing, and the Vallette jail in his native Turin, Ferrario decided to make a film in and not about prison. The religious theme came to Ferrario (who says he’s an atheist) when he was thinking about a place of penitence in which no one wants to play the role of Judas. The second challenge came in making a musical comedy that did not resemble Jesus Christ Superstar.
Shot with 20 prisoners (incarcerated for light crimes, although there was also one life convict) of Section 6, Block A of Molinette, Tutta Colpa di Giuda [trailer] centres on a theatre director (Kasia Smutniak, the young Polish actress of Quiet Chaos [trailer, film focus]) commissioned by the prison chaplain to stage the Passion of Christ. Working with the prisoners, her rather eccentric interpretation contains no betrayal, punishment or death on the cross.
Smutniak is flanked by Fabio Troiano, in the role of the prison director, and dj Francesco Signa, while the music was scored by the band Marlene Kuntz and Fabio Barovero.
The result is a humorous and surreal film whose harmony comes from the extemporaneous lines of the prisoners, who give a tight and unified performance. Relying on editing rather than a screenplay, the director said: "With a script, I would have changed the prisoners’ performances. Rather, it was a happening and I had to capture what was in the air”.
The film is being released domestically on April 10 by Warner on approximately 70 screens: an original Easter egg for the celebration of Christ’s Resurrection.
(Translated from Italian)