by Pasquale Scimeca
The film begins on a day in a year at the start of the third millennium. ‘Ntoni Malavoglia witnesses the arrival of a boat full of illegal immigrants. Aboard the boat is Alef who, taking advantage of the confusion, manages to escape. ‘Ntoni helps him; he finds him a job in the greenhouses and a home in the lane in which he lives with his family. The Malavoglia are fishermen. They own a boat, the Provvidenza, and a house, which everyone calls “La casa del Nespolo” (“the medlar tree house”). The family comprises granddad Padron ‘Ntoni, Bastianazzo, his wife Maruzza, and their children ‘Ntoni, Mena, Alessi and Lia. ‘Ntoni is twenty and the others are all younger. They are poor kids, like so many others in Sicily, and struggle to finish school. One night, the Provvidenza is wrecked...