The Berlin Golden Bear-winning documentary Fuocommare (Fire at Sea) has been selected (Best Foreign Language Film) to represent Italy at the Oscar 2017. The last film that won Best Foreign Language Film Award was La Grande Bellezza (The Great Beauty) by Paolo Sorrentino in 2014.
Director Gianfranco Rosi moved to Lampedusa (Sicily) and lived there for one year to understand what does it mean living close to one of the most controversial borders, where hundreds of migrants come every day.
Fuocoammare describes the life on the island in different forms, not only telling the stories of its inhabitants, but also of the countless migrants who have braved the waters of the Mediterranean in fragile boats, fleeing their countries in the hope of finding a better life in Europe.
As the film director himself said, Lampedusa is a kind of ‘fishermen’s place’ that receives anything that comes from the sea. And lampedusani (Lampedusa’s inhabitants) have been welcoming whoever runs away from wars and starvation since 1991.
This film is a wake-up call to Europe on migrants and refugees issues. Will these stories move Oscar jury and let the film win?