5 days
Italy, 2011

Original music : Mario Salvucci Production : Citrullo International

Programmed by Daniela Persico

French, Italian

Animation Society


For a few children sun is a fatal enemy. Xeroderma Pigmentosum is a rare illness that forces them to live far from any sunlight, completely isolated from the daytime life of their peers. This doesn't happen however at Camp Sundown, a summer camp in New York State conceived and established by the determination of their parents. This camp welcomes child patients from all over the world. Here an inverted universe, full of enchantment, flourishes. The life of this small nocturnal community is interwoven with the animated dreams conceived by the children themselves. Both parents and children share the same desire: to fully live out their lives, despite the illness.

Tënk's opinion

The film begins like a fairy tale told through the gentle drawings of an animated film, a journey through a disease that challenges childhood experiences of growing up. “The Dark Side of the Sun” is also a journey along the idealistic path of a couple of parents, driven by their daughter’s illness to create a community, a summer camp for these “children of the night”. The director shows us how this project managed to change the lives of countless people, and his benevolent vision makes the beauty of these everyday activities shine, opening our eyes to another dimension of life. The darkness of the natural world, the light created by humankind to conquer it, and fire as our ally become symbols that drag us off on the great adventure behind each person’s life.

Daniela Persico
Programmer and critic


Carlo Shalom Hintermann

Carlo Shalom Hintermann

Born in 1974, Carlo Hintermann made several shorts before directing the documentaries “Otar Iosseliani” (1999), “Rosy-fingered dawn: a film about Terrence Malick” (Venice Film Festival, 2002) and “Chatzer: Inside Jewish Venice” (Turin Film Festival, 2004). He also made the short animated film “H2O” (Annecy Animated Film Festival, 2007) with Studio Brutus. He was recently line producer and shot some of the images for the Italy unit of Terrence Malick’s “The Tree of Life” (Palm d'Or, Cannes Film Festival, 2011). He is co-founder of the production company Citrullo International with Luciano Barcaroli, Gerardo Panichi and Daniele Villa, and is also a composer and musician.