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Archive for January 27th, 2012

by Allan Fish

(Italy/Switzerland 2010 88m) DVD1/2

Dust to dust

p  Philippe Bober, Elda Guidinetti, Marta Donzelli, Gabriella Manfré, Susanne Marian, Andres Pfäffli, Gregorio Paenessa  d/w  Michelangelo Frammartino  ph  Andrea Locatelli  ed  Benni Atria, Maurizio Grilli  m  Paolo Benvenuti  art  Matthew Broussard

Giuseppe Fuda, Bruno Timpano, Nazareno Timpano,

Of all films of the 21st century I have had cause to write about, there is none that has filled me with more trepidation than Michelangelo Frammartino’s truly extraordinary Le Quattro Volte.  After all, my role is one of converter in chief, of trying to make the reader want to seek out the film, a minority film at best, and yet any description of what takes place cannot help but send the reader into a mild coma. 

            We’re in a remote Calabrian village perched high on a citadel, and in essence we follow the last days of an old goatherd.  We see that he’s frail; he’s coughing repeatedly and is seen taking something in his water before he goes off to sleep in his truly Spartan bedroom.  On his rounds, we see him go to the local church where an old woman tears half a page out of a magazine and folds up some dirt from the church floor into it.  It transpires that he’s using this to put into his water as a sort of immersion.  Needless to say it does no good, and he’s found dead one morning and is taken away for burial.  (more…)

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