Bil’s rating (out of 5): BBBB.
Original title: Gomorra
Italy, 2008. Fandango, Rai Cinema, Sky, Ministero per I Beni e le Attivita Culturali, MEDIA Programme of the European Union. Screenplay by Maurizio Braucci, Ugo Chiti, Gianni Di Gregorio, Matteo Garrone, Massimo Gaudioso, Roberto Saviano, based on the book by Roberto Saviano. Cinematography by Marco Onorato. Produced by Domenico Procacci. Music by Giovanni Guardi. Production Design by Paolo Bonfini. Costume Design by Alessandra Cardini. Film Editing by Marco Spoletini. Cannes Film Festival 2008. Golden Globe Awards 2008. Toronto International Film Festival 2008.
Uncompromising look at the Neapolitan “Camorra” mafia that has been called the Italian City Of God. Director Matteo Garrone follows a varied assortment of characters either oppressing or being oppressed by a rigid mob that controls everything from haute couture fashion to street-level thuggery. The situation causes endless amounts of violence and bloodshed but, seemingly from the looks of the way these people live, does not benefit anyone in any glorious way. The story begins when a number of members in the group defect from the core and start killing their colleagues, leading to an all-out war that is not without its innocent bystanders. To say that the film is enjoyable would be a stretch, as it is dark and quite upsetting, but the precision and realistic detail with which the world it depicts is presented, unglamorous and free of Godfather-esque notions of “honour” and “family”, is extremely impressive. The performances are naturalistic enough to be worthy of Pasolini.
The Criterion Collection: #493