Il ritorno di Maciste

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Il ritorno di Maciste

Il ritorno di Maciste

original title:

Il ritorno di Maciste

directed by:


Giuseppe Abbagnale, Steve Della Casa







film run:





Ready (22/09/2023)

festivals & awards:

Many different stories interweave in the tale of Bartolomeo Pagano. The story of the first Italian silent film, for which Pastrone invented new techniques and new languages. It is the story of Italy as it discovers the rise of heavy industry and clears the way for the first “mass dictatorship”. It is the story of “everyman”, torn away from the toil of his job as a dockworker to become the symbol of strength at the service of social justice.
To tell these stories, we chose to hybridise the language of the documentary with that of a fiction film. Calling Maciste back onto the set, plucking him out of the film Cabiria with a guide to help him understand who he is and where he is, will situate his life in the present day. Past and present are interwoven thanks to the images from the films in the Maciste series, and others borrowed from the archives. We rediscover silent films, today, to relay scenes from Pagano’s life, thanks to clips from silent films shot in the language of Pastrone’s time. Pagano’s story, that of a dockworker in Genoa who from one day to the next is hurled onto the international stage to become the first Italian superhero, becomes an opportunity to reflect upon the origins of cinema, to cast light on that moment in time when Italian cinema led the world. Maurizio Sciarra