Sixteen films from among the many, one after another, that have been able to tell the story of Ticino or that, choosing it as their backdrop, have managed to win over audiences, from 1945 to 2019. 74 years, to be precise. The same years as the Festival.
Collection: Locarno Film Festival
A journey through epochs and genres, between local and international sets, between breakthrough films, springboard films and films destined to trace a furrow, as if they were valleys in which to establish a new cinema, by Hermann or Sorrentino.
(in collaboration with the Locarno Film Festival)
To look for Ticino in the Locarno Film Festival might suggest the obvious, if not a kind of schizophrenia. And yet here it is, the land of the Locarno Film Festival: from guest to star, from event screening to shooting location of the films that have populated the event for over seventy years. Sixteen films from among the many, one after another, that have been able to tell the story of Ticino or that, choosing Ticino as their backdrop, have managed to win over audiences, from 1945 to 2019. 74 years, to be precise. The same years as the Festival.
In 1945, just a few months before the screening of O sole mio on the lawn of the Grand Hotel - the first of the many at the Locarno Film Festival - Austrian Leopold Lindtberg sowed the seeds of the screenplay for The Last Chance, shot in Gandria, Mergoscia, Caprino and Lamone and picking up a Palme d'Or at Cannes. Then forty years later, in 1984, the film returned home, to the Locarno Film Festival, in Ticino. In 1972, Alfredo arrived in Ticino laden with money, only to arrive when the banks were closed. This is how Ettore Scola's The Most Wonderful Evening of My Life begins, in Locarno in 2003 for the tribute to Dürenmatt. Again in 2003 in which the region, between Chiasso and Bellinzona via Lugano, would once again welcome Italian cinema, offering itself for The Consequences of Love, which in 2009 lit up Piazza Grande with the talent of future Oscar winner Paolo Sorrentino. In those years, the story to which a great Teco Celio lent both his face and emotions was also marvellous: Probably Love by Giuseppe Bertolucci, capable of painting the Lugano station, the Bellinzona theatre or the Ceresio with the strokes, colours and expressions of introspection.
So here it is, the Ticino of its residents, for which the Locarno Film Festival has been able to serve as a springboard and stage in years - the first years of the third millennium - that have never been so productive: from 2007 with Out of Bounds by Fulvio Bernasconi to 2012 with Tutti giù by Niccolò Castelli, from 2018 with Cronofobia by Francesco Rizzi to 2019 with Love Me Tender by Klaudia Reynicke, who set sail from Locarno, with her Ticino in sixteen ninths and blue overalls, for Toronto. Before Klaudia, in 2015, it was Sabine Boss who brought madness to the valleys with Vecchi pazzi. But if we talk about Ticino cinema at Locarno, we have to go back a couple of decades to find Innocenza (1986) and Bankomatt (1989) by Villi Hermann, winner of the Pardo d’argento in 1977 with San Gottardo and the Premio Cinema Ticino in 2011, but above all the lynchpin of Ticino and Swiss cinema, capable of making the thriller resonate between Chiasso and Airolo.
Then there is the cinema that goes beyond Airolo except to go back and shoot. It is the cinema of the writers from the other side of the Alps; the cinema of Katalin Gödrös (Songs of Love and Hate, 2010), Michael Steiner (Rascals on the Road, 2005) or the giant Francis Reusser, with Seuls (1981) at Locarno. And the cinema of Andres Pfäffli (Terra Bruciata, 1995), a "Swiss German from Ticino".
A long journey, even one which goes overseas and returns together with Eugène Green (La Sapienza, 2014), reminding us once again that for the language of cinema there is no accent, no curtain, no border or customs that matter. A language that from Hollywood to Bissone, between dams and banks, passes and piazzas, has been conquering the eyes and the silence of our audience for 74 years. In Ticino, in Locarno.