Documentary on the people of the Po valley. A family on a barge travels down the river and stops to get medicine for their sick daughter. Inhabitants of the Po valley delta prepare for a storm. —BFI
Michelangelo Antonioni once described his work as “archeological research” which sifted through “the arid remains of our times”. If Fellini claimed to treat the past as science fiction, Antonioni gazed deeply into the future already visible in the present (L’Eclisse) or a past which uneasily hung onto a present that had outlived it (L’Avventura). Born in an upper-middle class family in Ferrara in 1912; Antonioni studied economics at the University of Bologna, where he staged works by Luigi Pirandello as well as original work written by himself. Antonioni’s time as a film critic for the Roman Cinema magazine brought him in contact with Cesare Zavattini, Federico Fellini, Roberto Rossellini, Luchino Visconti and others. For Rossellini, he would co-write Un pilota ritorna and with Fellini, he collaborated on the screenplay of his first feature The White Shiek.
Antonioni, however, yearned to begin his own career in film. To this end, he enrolled at the Centro Sperimentale di Cinemografia… read more
A 10-minute mockumentary about life on the shores of Po river, told with images and camera movements of striking beauty. It echoes Murnau and Flaherty and it precedes De Seta and Piavoli. Maybe the best short film that I have ever seen.
Also: Posters for this year’s Directors’ Fortnight and Critics’ Week, “Great Directors” in San Francisco, Picasso in London and more.