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ROME 2012 Alice in the city

Pulce non c’è, the abnormality of bureaucracy

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- The only Italian film in competition premieres in Rome: a debut for Giuseppe Bonito based on Gaia Rayneri novel

Pulce non c’è, the abnormality of bureaucracy

The only Italian film in competition in Alice in the City (Altra Musica by Claudio Noce has been inserted into special events), Pulce non c'è [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
, had its premiere yesterday at the festival.

A feature film debut for Giuseppe Bonito, assistant, among other things to Sergio Citti and Davide Marengo, and director of television series Boris, Pulce non c’è was written by Monica Zapelli (I cento passi by Marco Tullio Giordana (2000), I demoni di San Pietroburgo [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
by Giuliano Montaldo (2007)) based on the widely awarded novel by the same name by young Turin-based writer Gaia Rayneri (who also helped with the screenplay).

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The story is set in Turin and seen through the eyes of a candid, vagrant Giovanna, thirteen-year-old sister to Margherita, nicknamed Pulce, who is nine and autistic. Pulce only drinks tamarind, loves panda teddy bears and pecorino cheese and in between happiness and nocturnal meltdowns, lives the serene existence of a normal family life.
One day, while her mother is waiting for her outside of school, the daughter doesn’t show up. It transpires she has been taken, for unknown reasons, to a protected facility

Later, the parents will come to know that the father is being accused of abusing his child, something which teachers think they have discovered through the method of ‘facilitated communication’ (which provides for interaction through computer generated questions and answers). The method has not been proven though, and the teachers’ training was never completed due to lack of funding. The parents are forced into long legal procedures to get out of this nightmare.

Bonito reveals the normality of a family facing the abnormality of bureaucracy, underlining its Kafka-type absurdities (Giovanna actually studies Kafka at school). But he develops them with a simplicity which reduces situations and makes protagonists’ reactions banal.

The cast is full of well-known stage actors (Pippo Delbono, Piera degli Esposti and Marina Massironi) as well as newcomers (the two girls Francesca Di Benedetto and Ludovica Falda). As a result the overall effect is unbalanced, because of differences in performance, histrionic and dramatic on one end, and minimal on the other.
The film was produced by Roman Overlook Production with the support of the Italian Development and Growth Foundation CRT, FIP – Piedmont Film Investments, the Turin Piedmont Film Commission, the Turin Commune, The Ministry for Cultural Goods and Activities(MiBAC) and DAMS – Disciplines of Art Music and Performance and is being sold by Adriana Chiesa Enterprises.

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(Translated from Italian)

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