Cesare Zavattini and the Bassa reggiana area. The Bassa reggiana and Cesare Zavattini. A rich and complex relationship, which in this film interweaves the past and present, creating a new suspended time through the words of four men of different ages and social conditions. The film starts with the great Za, father of Italian Neorealism (who does not remember Bicycle Thieves or Miracle in Milan?), who imaginarily meets his people in this area of Emilia lapped by the River Po. Wainer often goes fishing with his brother Rino at the river where today the waters are dominated by the sheatfish which devour everything. Being unemployed he wonders, with a few regrets, about his family with its partisan and antifascist traditions. The ideals and expectations in a better world have given way to disappointment. Leo, also known as Pavone, is the last of the naïve painters and seems to come from a story by Zavattini. He is always in the company of the little dog Tupin, he paints passionately and with anger, because as a painter he feels limited. He spends the days working on his ingenuous little paintings and horse herding, besides thing about the cute barmaid who works not far away from the old farmhouse where he lives alone. Giovanni, as a pensioner and former militant communist, he photographs every corner of the Bassa. From a very tender age he knew Ligabue, the errant painter of Swiss origin but also a symbol of this land. He looks at his political past with a critical but loving eye.
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