46 days
86'
Italy, France, 2020

Original music : Ulisse Mazzagatti, Fratelli Mancuso Production : Les Films d'Ici Méditerranée, Qoomoon

Programmed by Daniela Persico

Italian
French

Portraits Society



Synopsis


A Sicilian fortuneteller is released from prison after serving a long sentence and tries to pick up his life again. He advises people about their love life by giving tarot readings. He also promises them irradiated bracelets, although his supplier, a mysterious artisan who melts metal and stone, doesn’t deliver the goods. In addition, the fortuneteller’s health is rapidly deteriorating. A prologue with quotes from the philosopher and seer Empedocles, who lived in the Greek colony of Akragas (now Agrigento) in Sicily in the 5th century B.C., precedes the story in two chapters about this remarkable magus. His customers are desperately looking for certainties and answers. They want to believe in something higher than the seeming arbitrariness of their lives. The lofty, otherworldly theme of Divinations contrasts with earthly elements such as stone, metal, and the lava of Etna. This mysterious portrait raises intriguing questions and fascinates with its calm and arresting images, and associative narrative structure.

Tënk's opinion


After making his debut with "Triokala", a film exploring popular beliefs between generations in an inland village in Sicily, Leandro Picarella took a new angle to offer us an original portrait of his homeland. He investigates the most steadfast beliefs upon which some have already made their fortune, and others experiment new horizons. On the fringes of a dissolving world, the existential paths of the two protagonists rub shoulders, opposing yet coinciding extremes of the sense of magic, originating from this age-old sentiment of which humanity feels the presence and the need. Observing them from a distance, as if observing them from another world, the young filmmaker strives to provoke this exchange of energies and hope, via a transfer of the intangible tides that continue to flow through an emerging Mediterranean society.




Daniela Persico
Programmer and critic


Authors


Leandro Picarella

Leandro Picarella

Leandro Picarella (1984), born in Agrigento, graduated from the Centro Sperimentale di Cinematografia (Palermo), to continue his studies between Palermo and Florence, specialising in Italian cinema and dramatic literature. From 2010 to 2014, he wrote and produced his first short films and a few short documentaries. In 2015, he produced "Triokala", which was rewarded by many festivals in Italy and abroad, followed in 2018 by the short documentary "Epicentro", that competed at the Venice Film Festival. Over recent years, he has also worked as a teacher and speaker. "Divinations", his second feature film, was selected by the IDFA and the Festival dei Popoli. He is one of the founders of Qoomoon, a film production company created in Sicily in 2017.