Basilicata filmmakers make environmental statement

Oct 31, 2017 636

BY: Jeannine Guilyard

In our ongoing series “Basilicata: Terra di Cinema,” we are focusing today on a new film by two of Basilicata’s most prolific filmmakers: Antonio Andrisani and Pascal Zullino. Since our series began in 2015, this issue of oil drilling has been present among the region’s contemporary filmmakers. So much so, that it would be disrespectful to the filmmakers to overlook it. Through their work, the directors express their concerns over the oil drilling, which began in the region in 1996. Nicknamed “Little Texas,” the drilling site in Basilicata produces a staggering 80,000 barrels a day. This production has led to profound environmental and health concerns throughout the region.

The latest filmmakers to express those concerns through cinema are Antonio Andrisani and Pascal Zullino with their feature film “Il Vangelo secondo Mattei” (The Gospel According to St. Matthews). The story centers on an elderly man Franco Gravela (played by Flavio Bucci) who is offered one last shot at his dream of acting in cinema. Those making the offer are a couple of failed directors who also need to make this film in a last ditch effort to save their faces and careers. Most of the “film inside a film” takes place on the natural, magnificent set of the Sassi of Matera with shots of the surrounding countryside and landscape.

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