EXCLUSIVE: Trailer for Visions du Réel title Pure Unknown
- Valentina Cicogna and Mattia Colombo's documentary, bowing in the international competition, zooms in on an anatomic pathologist in her fight to secure every person’s right to identity
Every night, nameless bodies land in Dr Cristina Cattaneo’s autopsy room. She calls them the Pure Unknown. These Pure Unknown often belong to the fringes of society – they are homeless people, sex workers, runaway teenagers. Lately, they have mostly been migrants, rejected by the Mediterranean Sea and washed up on the shores of Italy. If all rights belong to the living, nothing is left to the dead. So what happens when the dead have lost their identity? In the face of this growing multitude, no one seems concerned about their right to dignity. No one but Cristina.
This is the synopsis of Valentina Cicogna and Mattia Colombo’s documentary feature Pure Unknown [+see also:
film profile], set to have its world premiere in the international feature-film competition at Visions du Réel before heading on to Toronto’s Hot Docs, where it will be showcased in the International Spectrum competition.
“Cristina and her team investigate unknown remains in search of the unmistakable characteristics that constitute a person’s identity and uniqueness. At the same time, they are confronted with issues that go beyond particularism – universal questions such as death, mourning, the end of an existence. These are issues that generate feelings common to all: sadness, compassion, emptiness. This is why we have the impression that Cristina and Labanof’s [the Laboratory of Forensic Anthropology and Odontology - University of Milan, headed by Cattaneo] work explores not only the identity of the individual, but also that of entire societies, while presenting itself as an ‘inclusive’ response in the context of the anxieties and barriers that characterise our time,” said the directorial duo.
Pure Unknown was produced by Sebastiano Luca Insinga and Chiara Nicoletti for Jump Cut (Italy), in co-production with Amel Soudani for Amka Films Productions (Switzerland), Mario Adamson for Sisyfos Film Production (Sweden) and Silvana Bezzola for RSI Radiotelevisione svizzera. The project received support from Creative Europe – MEDIA, Eurimages, MiC Direzione Generale Cinema e Audiovisivo, the Trentino Film Commission, the Piemonte Film Commission – Piemonte Doc Film Fund, Cultural Division Cantone Ticino and the Docs Up Fund. Deckert Distribution is in charge of its world sales.
Watch our exclusive trailer below:
Did you enjoy reading this article? Please subscribe to our newsletter to receive more stories like this directly in your inbox.