(2022, Italy, Germany, UK, 104')
Abel Ferrara tells Padre Pio’s story when, at the end of World War I, young Italian soldiers go back to San Giovanni Rotondo. Church and rich landowners rule the economy of this poor and violent land, families are desperate and men are victorious but shattered. Padre Pio arrives in a convent of cappuccini to carry out his ministry, bringing a charismatic aura. The first free elections’ eve and the massacre in San Giovanni Rotondo in 1920, where 14 people were killed and 60 injured, are the background of the saint’s experience.
Born in the Bronx in 1951, Abel Ferrara is one of the most controversial directors in the American cinema scene. He started making amateur films on Super 8 in his teens and made his debut in the industry with films such as Driller Killer and Ms.45. His cinematographic poetics is marked by urban violence, sexophobia and the theme of guilt vs. innocence. He often casts great names, such as Christopher Walken, Harvey Keitel, and his alter ego actor Willem Dafoe.