Last year’s winner of Golden Lion Award for Lifetime Achievement, Italian auteur Marco Bellocchio bases his examination of the issue of euthanasia on the high-profile Englaro case.
A dramatic account of the distressing events unfolding in front of the La Quiete Clinic in Udine, where the life of Eluana Englaro, in a vegetative state for seventeen years, was extinguished. Relating the last six days of the girl’s life, the film daringly probes into the political background of the tragedy, provoking fierce controversies in Italy already during the shoot. The director chose to keep Eluana’s story out of the limelight, instead focusing on various fictitious characters with different ideologies and varied emotional involvement in the case.
»The Englaro case was extensively covered by newspapers, television and the internet. Meanwhile, in front of the clinic where the girl was taken to, there were very few people protesting and with just a handful of arguments and that was it. This while Italy was gearing up for the defence of its constitution on one side, and a run for a law that would block euthanasia on the other. In a kind of Griffith montage (two alternating but parallel actions which create a sense of expectancy), there was great anxiety, while the life of this poor girl was brought to its natural end.« (Marco Bellocchio)
Born in 1939 in Piacenza, Italy. He studied film direction in Rome and London. He embarked on his professional path in the 1960s as documentary and short film director. He garnered international acclaim already with his feature debut, Fist in His Pocket, and subsequently won several prestigious awards. Having made over twenty movies, Bellochio is one of the most prolific filmmakers of his generation.