September 21, 2021


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‘The Catholic School’ review: Suspiciously handsome true crime drama

4 min read

“After that summer, nothing will be the same,” said Edo (Emanuel Maria de Stefano), describing “The Catholic School” as a disturbing sight of Stefano Mardini, the brutality and brutal reality of stylistically polished lead-ups. The event is known to the Italians as Circeo Massacre. It’s a curious start to a film that ends in an exciting escalation of violence and sexual violence, and it points to the bizarre conflict that Mardini never resolves, the hard-fought re-creation, the tragic arrival of his film in most cases, and the impossible ghost. True-crime sadism-horror it suddenly turns out.

He attended a private Catholic school in the suburbs of Rome in 1975, and Edo, with half the wealthy, untouchable elite boys of Rome. The boys are introduced to us, rather confusingly, but ultimately based on the indomitable screenplay, Mordini and Massimo Goudioso, based on the extensive, multi-faceted book “La Scuola Catolika”, co-written by Luca Infasselli and by Eduardo Albinati. Some personalities take the identical, handsome, reckless Italian youth out of the general impression.

There is Gianni (Francesco Cavallo), who was initially involved in a brutal incident – of course the most beautiful boys are the worst bullies – which led him to the head teacher, who quickly, accurately, bought Gianni’s father, Rafael (Ricardo Scamarsio). At home, Raphael has clearly expressed his displeasure with his son, not only because of the blasphemy he never mentioned, but also because Gianni has made him “like a donkey”. The voiceovers had Edo Muse’s rules, but they were only applied randomly and so the boys only learned to behave as if there was none and to receive punishment when they arrived.

There is Arbus (Giulio Fochetti), a smart cool mother (Valeria Golino) and a beautiful sister on whom Edo has a crush. There is Pick (Alessandro Cantalini), a blonde with manic eyes from an elementary school shooter, whose mother is a former film star (Jasmine Trinka), who herself is a classmate of her son, motorcycle-riding, leather-jacketed Jervi (Guido Coaglion). And there’s the pious, quiet Gioacchino Rummo (Andrea Lintozzi), who comes from a family of observant Catholics, perhaps with the exception of his sister Leah (Beatrice Spata), who masturbates at night and stares at Jervi during the day.

And much more: The “Catholic School” may mimic Albinati’s 1,200-page composition to see many mini-story lines, but shrink to a feature film, translating it into scrapines, an impression not helped by the film. The divisions between these chapters that confusingly change the countdown format, from “5 months ago” to “130 hours ago” to “2 months ago” and so on. Do the math?

As Edo’s description makes clear more than once, his goal is to make the impending crime relevant to the structure of high-crust Italian society of the 1970s: unimaginable mechanism, violent homophobia, cruel superstition, religious hypocrisy, and dishonest privileges that allow such evil growth. “Violence was everywhere,” Edo claims; It was also “an incurable disease” for men to be born

But when the time is cleverly revealed (the fine costume of Grazia Materia is a particularly effective signifier), and the gentle antiquity of Luigi Martinucci, the brooding cinematography primarily evokes a certain horror atmosphere, reminiscent of Donna Tart’s “The Secret History”. Greater intent. There is almost not enough commentary on the role of the church to justify the title (although there is a nicely pointed cut between a navel test and the administration of a communist wafer), but the children we know best are those who are exposed to the same forces as the killers. Was – and in some cases even greater tragedy – still did No. Rape or murder someone in the end.

So were the three young men responsible for the criminal products of their social, family and religious backgrounds or were they malicious monsters acting entirely according to their own crooked nature? Mardini’s film, swinging between these two perspectives, tries to keep its cake and even tortures it. And somewhere, somewhat obscured by all the preconceived notions of self-discovery, there are two victims in all the erratic practice and practice dramas that young people carry out (given the heartbreaking dimensions despite the underdeveloped characterization of Federica Torchetti and Benedetta Porcroli). “The Catholic School” is a landmark event that shocks a society, changes Italian rape laws, and apparently obscures the lives of everyone who knows the killers, but it is strangely interesting between the two, for whom nothing will be the same after this summer. One of them is dead and the other is in a car trunk next to his friend’s body, rarely alive.

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