Non è un paese per giovani
Every year five hundred thousand young people leave Italy and flee overseas. They call it “brain drain” but among the new emigrants there are a lot of ordinary young people seeking their fortune. Sandro and Luciano are two of them. Sandro, 24, comes from Rome and is curious about his future but he doesn’t have a clear idea yet. He graduated a while ago and he may want to become a writer. He still lives with his parents and works as a casual. On his first evening shift as a waiter he meets Luciano, who is a little older than him and always earned his living. He is nice and elegant, looks a bit gay and his colleagues can’t help mocking him. Sandro is curious about him instead. Luciano is enigmatic to him. They become good friends after lots of lifts on his moped at the end of the evening shift. Sandro learns about Luciano’s plan. To start up a new business in Italy is a hopeless dream for young people. Now there’s a place instead where everything seems possible. It’s at your fingertips: Cuba. While his friends scrape out a living in London and his girlfriend is ready to start her career in the Silicon Valley, Sandro decides to split from her and set off for what it seems to be a real adventure together with Luciano. Thanks to Luciano’s ten thousand dollars and another ten thousand, which Sandro asked his father for as a kind of upfront inheritance, the two will be able to open a new restaurant: Cuba is their new aim now. Nora, an Italian girl, welcomed them in Cuba. She runs the casa particular where they will live. She has shaven hair and a weird scar on her head although she is much more weird than that. She is beautiful, confused, incoherent when talking, straightforward and honest. Felipe, a 40-year-old man from Cuba, manages their deal and signs as a partner in the restaurant. In Cuba foreigners can start a new business only with Cuban partners. As soon as Sandro and Luciano see the wooden shack on a wonderful beach they have already in mind the restaurant it will become. Sandro and Luciano celebrate the event with Nora, who leads them to Havana at night. They end up learning about the world of boxing matches in Havana where Cuban people and foreigners, seeking for strong emotions, face each other no holds barred. As euphoric and drunk Sandro jumps into the fray and risks life and limb. Luciano steps in and saves him showing unexpected physical strength and power. That event will change their lives. Sandro and Nora get closer and closer, whilst Luciano drifts apart. Sandro doesn’t understand what is happening to him as he is very busy with some problems at the hovel. Luciano seems losing more and more interest in the restaurant. One night Sandro realizes his friend gets back home with injuries on his face. So he decides to follow him. The next day Sandro finds out that Luciano is still taking part into the fights. He likes them and feels good. Everyone calls him “Pavarotti”. He has become famous in that environment. And that’s not all. Luciano takes pills to bear the pain and admits getting them from his friend Nora. Sandro can’t believe it. When he argues with his girlfriend she confirms that. Sandro refuses to listen to reason. He doesn’t want to see none of them and leaves. When he is about to leave Cuba, he decides to go to the shack. After all that place is all he has. Sandro can’t sleep that night as he has too many worries. He decides to stay and start a new life on the island. And first of all he decides to start writing his novel. He wants to tell the story of Luciano Capriotti, alias Pavarotti. After all he went to Cuba, and he stayed there, to become a writer chasing his main character. To be a writer he needs to get by. What can Italian people do in a foreign country when they have financial difficulties? They work as waiters in Italian restaurants. Sandro spends his days on the beach writing his book. He wants to be updated about his friends’ success and failure. Through videomessages he learns about his father’s problems with his newspaper kiosk. He also works at the restaurant Maronna mia where he meets Euro60 on his birthday. He is the traditional 60-yearold Italian tourist going to Cuba looking for fun. That man will save his life. Sandro also meets Gilda Arancio, one of Nora’s friends, who makes him laugh when he tells him about his life in Cuba. One day Sandro sees Nora while he is writing his novel. She tells him Luciano didn’t stop fighting and he is dying. Both go and save their friend. They find him on a building roof. Although he is exhausted and has no power, he still wants to keep on fighting. Sandro can’t persuade him. He decides to leave and call the police so that they can stop that crap. But he goes back and leads Luciano to safety helped by Nora. Luciano is in bad condition in a hospital bed and is about to faint. Sandro leaves the doctors taking care of him and spends the night with Nora. They talk, get closer and make love. Luciano is still in bad condition but alive. Sandro and Nora take him to the shack and spend the evening cooking the famous spaghetti “Luciano’s style”. That is the last time they see each other. The next morning Luciano is not there. They look for him everywhere. Everybody says he died. But to Sandro his friend just vanished. The shack is a spaghetti restaurant with twenty tables full of tourists. Gilda Arancio works as a cashier there. Cesare, Sandro’s father, works as a waiter. He closed the newspaper kiosk and moved to Cuba, too. Nora prepares cocktails. Sandro texts Nora, who reaches him on the beach. She reads the novel he has just finished writing. His novel tells about his best friend, who is still alive to him, although nobody knows anything about him. He may have turned into the raindrops making them wet while the girl is reading the last page of his novel.