Franco Piavoli will be in Matera on April 24 for MaTerre, in a Lectio on cinema. In his contribution to Carta di identità, Nostos, his Ulysses, is the symbol of a timeless hero in search of the identity between memory and nostalgia for his origins.


Nostos, the return

At the end of the war, Nostos (Ulysses) begins his journey back home in the waters of the Mediterranean but several reasons delay the conclusion of his adventure: natural obstacles, evanescent memories of his childhood, of his parents. The charm of a beautiful nymph. The longing for the past, for his land of origin, for his wife who awaits him. The deep and mysterious silence that surrounds everything. The terrible loneliness following a shipwreck in which all his companions perish and in which he himself risks dying. On the other hand, nature in its wonderful aspects: the sea, the rocks, the animals in their simplicity of life, the flowers and plants in their incomparable beauty. Everything seems to welcome the wandering man like a caring mother. In the end, he fortunately manages to get close to his home, his affections and the things that are familiar to him.
In the film, Nostos is a timeless hero, a veteran of an atrocious war and forced to travel to distant lands. He crosses the most evocative scenery of the Mediterranean, full of myths and history, to finally reach Terra Madre. Like Homeric Ulysses, Nostos expresses our fears, remorse, despair, but also illusions, enchantments and above all the need to shelter in the house of memory and elementary affections.
By placing the story in a remote and imaginary dimension, the emotions submerged in our historical and genetic memory can better emerge. Inspired by the myths of ancient heroes, wandering is a symbol of desire, of insatiable yearning for a goal that seems unattainable. Wandering, regret, nostalgia are at the same time a push to research and exploration. Ulysses is the archetype in which modern man best identifies with the restlessness that characterizes him.
As with The Blue Planet with Nostos, the Return I wanted to make a film “symphonic”. Alongside the “theatrical” cinema that dominates the film market, I am convinced that a strand of “symphonic” cinema can be developed. In the history of music, alongside theatrical music (opera, melodrama), symphonic music (symphony, concert, instrumental music, polyphonic music) has become established. There is less involvement on the logical level but a greater evocative potential. All the elements inserted in the soundtrack of a film (noises, words, music…) through sound editing and mixing combine to form a new and organized musical composition with times, intervals and sequences that can be translated into a well-defined score. The language of Nostos is recreated on the lines of ancient Mediterranean dialects. I didn’t translate it because I wasn’t interested in transmitting particular meanings, but in giving the basic sense of a feeling and a thought. Every language has a sound value rather than a semantic one. In this film too, as in the Blue Planet, I made extensive use of natural noises: the voice of the wind, the voice of the sea, of animals and of man naturally… because man is part of nature. It’s nature. Even the man of today, even the man who will sail in the galactic spaces will be an element of nature that will move in nature. He will discover new aspects of nature and will have to establish new alliances with them. Without ever losing memory and nostalgia for its distant origins.


Franco Piavoli in Matera on 24 April 2019

The director Franco Piavoli will be in Matera on April 24, 2019 for a Lectio that will follow the screening of his film Nostos, the return. The event will be attended by Inan Molinari, film critic, and Giacomo Martini.

The event is on reservation, reserve now so as not to miss the opportunity.

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Documentary filmmaker. Born in 1933, after graduating in law, he teaches law in high school while he cultivates his hobbies: poetry, painting, music and photography. Successful at the festivals in Italy and abroad for the originality of style and poetic measure, his first short films working from 1953 to 1962. [Uccellanda (1953) Ambulatorio (1954) Incidente (1955) Le stagionis (1961) Domenica sera (1962) Emigranti (1963) Evasi (1964). Then, for about twenty years, a long silence until the release of the first feature: “Il pianeta azzurro”, in 1982, which presents a new way of conceiving cinema. Piavoli is a craftsman director who produces his films alone and uses only the help of his wife Neria and his son Mario. In 1989 he created “Nostos. Il ritorno” and in 1996 “Voci nel tempo”. Since the ‘90s he has directed opera (“Suor Angelica” by Puccini and “La forza del destino” by Verdi) and he has taught Institutions of Direction at the University of the Sacred Heart in Brescia. “Al primo soffio di vento” is from 2002, from 2012 “Frammenti”, from 2016 “Festa”.

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