L'uomo con la lanterna
Kiné, with the support of Sardegna Film Commission Foundation
festivals & awards:
Mario Garau was Sardinian and worked in the Credito Italiano Bank. In the mid-1920s he was posted to China to work in the Italian Bank of China, in Tientsin and Shanghai. This was still the period of the International Concessions and of the Unequal Treaties. That banker was the uncle of Francesca Lixi. When she was a little girl, Francesca saw many chests and trunks arriving to her home, belonging to Mario Gaurau and containing many strange objects, 8mm films and photos.
For decades, those exotic objects, and the very restricted information on this close but absent relation, filled up Francesca's imagination and led her to try to find out much more about the mysterious figure of her uncle.
'At home, no one seemed to know much about Uncle Mario. My search for news of his life and his archive of films and photos gradually became a vehicle for the research of my own identity, in a complex process of continuously reformulating memories.'
The film uses photos, documents and previously unseen film footage to tell the story of Mario Garau and to explore the rarely mentioned world of the International Concessions in the Far East of less than a century ago.