The documentary is based on a unique historical document: the investigative report carried out in Sicily by mule in October 1893, by Venetian journalist Adolfo Rossi, the only existing direct evidence of Fasci's story.
Blacklisted by the fascist regime and then forgotten, the investigation of Rossi (that narrates the film) leads us on the trail of this unknown Sicily, on a mule trip along the magnificent landscapes of the island's midland. Simultaneously another investigation is developing, that of a today journalist who investigates the story of Fasci dei lavoratori. Traces, signs to illuminate the twentieth century and the present time.
October 1893. While Italian newspapers publish police dispatches about turmoil in the Sicilian countryside provoked by a movement which called itself "Fasci dei lavoratori", Adolfo Rossi, a journalist from northern Italy, decides to find out more. He leaves for Sicily to investigate. He is the only reporter to do so: the Government sees the Sicilian movement as "a matter of public order," and the press endorses this view.
In Sicily, traveling mostly by mule, Rossi meets the Fasci. Neither bandits nor thieves or conspirators, they are peasants and sulfur miners, ragged and hungry men and women struggling against feudal slavery. United in Fasci, they are challenging long centuries of the Sicilian social organization based on the privilege of large landowners. According to reports of the delegates of public security, they are three hundred thousand, divided in 165 sections spread throughout the country. For three months, they don't hoe the land of their lords; their children only eat grass and prickly pears. In Sicily, the most underdeveloped region of Italy, the first major strike against labor exploitation in Capitalist Italy has exploded. Women lead the parades. “Free to leave their houses alone even at night, they speak in public as true orators, they want land, bread and work for themselves and for their children ..." the journalist wrote in an article in October 16th, hit by their faith in the ideals of justice and social participation that debunks the generalized stereotypes and prejudices that still weigh on Sicilian women. "I could not imagine finding rough peasants expressing themselves with such propriety", Rossi will comment at the end, resuming the journey.
Through the amazing and unusual landscapes of central Sicily, where the sea is distant and unknown, the movie returns the voices of a forgotten human story. In parallel, the report of a present day journalist rebuilds the historical and political context that saw the birth and the end of the movement. Traces to the present.
Arose in 1891, struck down in 1894 by the troops of Crispi's government and by the mafia with hundreds of dead and wounded (among them few months old children in their mothers' arms) the Fasci Siciliani were founded in Catania and Palermo by a group of young enthusiasts, socialists and anarchists, inspired by the Bourse de Travail known and studied in Paris. In no time, the Fasci spread throughout the island, 165 sections opened, reaching more than 300 thousand members, men and women, mostly farmers, which were then joined by sulfur miners, shepherds, artisans, and the poor working class of Sicilian towns. They have been the protagonists of the first strike ever organized in Italy. They demanded the application of the Patti Agrari (Agrarian pact), the new employment contract that the Congress of the Fasci, meeting in Corleone July 31, 1893, had unanimously approved. It was the first written union contract of capitalist Italy, and perhaps of the whole agricultural Europe. They had been nipped in blood by order of Prime Minister Francesco Crispi, a former partisan of Garibaldi, at the request of the powerful caste of agrarian Sicilians which, along with the industrial bourgeoisie of the north, spreads the rumor of a political conspiracy of the Fasci, in cahoots with France and Russia. In Sicily, Crispi declares a state of siege, the suppression of press freedom and freedom of association, the erasure of thousands of Sicilians from the electoral lists, special courts. The processes belie the thesis of conspiracy, returning the movement to what it had been: a fight against the exploitation of labor and the mafia feud. Nevertheless, all was useless: leaders and members are sentenced to hundreds of years in prison in what had been the gaols of the Bourbon kingdom.
PROFILE OF THE AUTHOR AND DIRECTOR.
Documentary filmmaker and journalist, Nella Condorelli was born in Catania, lives and works between Rome and Sicily. She has devoted many years to social and historical documentary, putting first the narration of the invisible history from the side of movements, of peoples and of women. She has been rewarded the National Award for her reportages from the South Mediterranean, and the Prize Città di Sasso Marconi in Enzo Biagi's name for her innovative narrative language. She wrote the screenplay and directed 1893.The report
1893. The report reconstructs a human story never told before on big screen. I wanted to break a 120 years old silence and no doubt, upstream, there is my need to investigate the history of Sicily, my land, to overthrow many clichés, first of all that of Sicily and Sicilian as always subdued. The investigation of Adolfo Rossi, the document at the base of my work, tells of a movement spread throughout the island, united and organized against slavery in latifundia and the mafia control in the feuds and municipalities. The first organized popular movement of united Italy, thirty years from the Expedition of the Thousand. Very inconvenient for the Kingdom of Italy, it will be so throughout the twentieth century until today, given the tenacity with which it continues to be erased from Italian history.
When by chance I found and read the investigation of Adolfo Rossi, published in Milan in 1894 under the title "The unrest in Sicily. Report on the Fasci dei lavoratori", I was amazed for two reasons, the first: I did not know anything about the events that are described, the second: the language and narrative style. Rossi is a journalist who cannot be silenced by the power; he goes against government information which called for an end of the Fasci "conspirators" and "bandits". He goes to Sicily and gives voice to the peasants, men and women, the sulfur miners, the laborers, the carusi (children miners), he collects and reports their reasons, he urges barons and landowners, commissioners, governors and delegates of public security, priests and bishops too.
The research phase has taken me a long time, there was the need to frame the context in which the Fasci moved. I scrutinized the Europe of that time, at the end of a century oppressed by the international economic crisis, linked to the nascent capitalism and new markets, with poverty and unemployment, the first popular consciousness of the exploitation of labor, political and parliamentary scandals in the Kingdom of Italy ...
I was literally thrown into a forgotten reality, of which no one talks today, while it would be useful to study to reflect on many Italian and European contemporary issues.
I can say that it was the film which came to meet me. The report by Rossi became the narrator; the camera has remade his journey by mule on the spectacular trazzere (paths) along the center of the island, between villages of stone. Unknown and majestic landscapes mix with the documents, animated illustrations, songs, literary texts, postcards, letters, photos ... the looks of peasant women and men curved on the harsh land, ragged children in the darkness of hovels they call home, the voices of stunted and emaciated children in the bottom of the wells of sulfur mines, hungry, hard lives, miserable beyond belief, slaves of a social system based on the domain of few ... There is pain and fatigue, no compassion, no fable. Thus their faith in the Fasci, assemblies, marches, strikes...
Essential is the second report, which in the film runs parallel to that of Rossi, read by an actress, which retraces the time of the Fasci and wonders about the consequences of their removal for Sicily and the Italian XX century. This journey becomes internal and questions us, scattering certainties to those who want to listen, yesterday, today, the memory, the action.CREDITS.
by Nella Condorelli. With Francesco Foti, Enrica Rosso, Federico Price Bruno and the mule Giovanni, Alessandra Costanzo. Musc by Massimo Zamboni.Drawings by Nico Bonomolo. Director of Photography Vincenzo Condorelli AIC. Editing byr M.Cristina Sansoni Giuseppe Pietro Tornatore.
PRIZE AGRIFILM BANDIERA VERDE CIA 2015
Preview in Palermo ITALIAN DOC FILM SCREENING – Movie Theatre ROUGE ET NOIR 10th October 2014
Participation in the 72ma MOSTRA D'ARTE CINEMATOGRAFICA DI VENEZIA – 3rd September 2015 - Lounge of REGIONE DEL VENETO - Hotel Excelsior - Venice Lido
PRODUCTION FACTORY FILM with the collaboration of MIBACT Ministero Beni e Attività Culturali Direzione Generale Cinema - MISE Ministero dello Sviluppo Economico - REGIONE SICILIANA Assessorato al Turismo Sport Spettacolo - PROGRAMMA SENSI CONTEMPORANEI - UFFICIO SPECIALE PER IL CINEMA E L'UDIOVISIVO / SICILIA FILM COMMISSION - ARCHIVIO DI STATO DI ROVIGO
Under the patronage REGIONE DEL VENETO - COMUNE DI PALERMO - ASSOCIAZIONE CASA MEMORIA FELICIA E PEPPINO IMPASTATO
with the support of Municipally Caltavuturo - Canicattì - Casteltermini - Corleone - Lercara Friddi - Marineo - Palazzo Adriano - Piana degli Albanesi - Villafrati
Distribution: FACTORY FILM SRL - collaboration CINIT CINEFORUM ITALIANO
contact Serena Galioto : mail email@example.com
RUNTIME 63' (Long version, 78’)
SHOOTING FORMAT Full HD color
SOUND Dolby Stereo
PROJECTION FORMAT Bluray - DCP
YEAR OF PRODUCTION 2014
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