Life Anew (first feature)

original title:

LA VITA NUOVA

directed by:

country:

Italy/Germany

year:

2017

format:

colour

status:

In pre-production (11/01/2019)

Franco is a frustrated door-to-door salesman living in a remote Italian village. One night, while he is alone and drunk in the nearby mountains, a strange man called Yoni appears to him, telling him that there are many dimensions besides the one in which humans live.
Back in town, Franco tells everyone about the encounter and realizes that some of his fellow villagers are eager to listen to his stories. Happy to finally get attention, Franco creates a cult called La Vita Nuova. Inspired by Yoni’s message, it features aliens, multi-dimensional travel and the promise that one day its believers will be able to move to another dimension, in which all their desires will be fulfilled.
An increasing number of villagers begin to attend the meetings of La Vita Nuova and Franco seems to have finally found his place in the world, until one day Yoni suddenly shows up in the village. Who is he? And what is he doing here?
Faced with the possibility of his cult falling apart, Franco tries to justify Yoni’s return and behaviours in a way that could confirm his stories and strengthen his authority, but it is a dangerous bargain that will turn against him and end up harming the believers’ lives.

DIRECTOR'S NOTES:
La Vita Nuova is a celebration of life in its tragicomic fullness. It is the story of humans looking for a way to be happy in dire circumstances. It is a tale about finding belief in a wasteland.
Franco, our protagonist, has found happiness by creating a spiritual movement after grasping that his fellow villagers are unsatisfied people who are looking for new answers, just like him. Franco is willing to give these answers, no matter how nonsensical they are, both to offer them a chance of redemption and to fuel his own narcissism.
Franco’s symbiotic relationship with his followers allows us to explore the dynamics of faith and power in a group of people. The context creates a clash between the grandeur of Franco’s metaphysical claims and the triviality of an Italian village’s daily life.
We wish for the viewers to realise that life can be wrong and deceiving, but will never cease to amaze us and make us smile.