L’ARTE DELLA FELICITÁ

Italy

Synopsis

Under a leaden sky, among the apocalyptic presages of a Naples at the height of its degradation, Sergio, a taxi driver, receives news which overwhelms him. Nothing can ever be as it was.
Now Sergio looks at himself in the mirror and what he sees is a forty-year-old man, who has turned his back on music and has become lost in the limbo of his city.
The taxi becomes the microcosm within which he withdraws to escape his world, but into which, the world comes and goes through his passengers.
As the storm rages outside, the car begins to crowd with memories, hopes, regrets, and new opportunities.
Now he knows who the passengers are: they are souls, ghosts, memories, paths. Or they are messengers of a sun rising elsewhere, bringing with it the revelation of what is beyond the confines of his windshield.
Sooner or later the rain will cease and the sky will open. And from there, the end will come. Or the music will return.

Directors Statement

This is a story which begins from below, as from below rises what one yearns for and then fills with that which breathes without forgetting what it was aspiring to. For if happiness came from above it would greatly grieve those who with open arms have waited long, not to mention the ones who, on the other hand, have patiently worked hard never chancing the leap.
And then facing certain subjects, which measure so many meters, of which we see merely the feet, one feels too low and it serves little to raise our voices if one is not ready to clamber up. And if Happiness is the craft of those who sow smiles, clambering up is certain to be the Art of those who envy the craftsman.
Thus one starts from what one has: one’s own land, experiences, the expectations of relatives and friends, to narrate the dilemma of a life: whether it be nobler to cram into the soul the suggestions and ghosts of an inauspicious city life or to take arms against a sea of feelings and by narrating, end them.
The story begins from a title, chosen by a producer, taken perhaps from a book and then it goes backwards, in search of its author and beyond, in search of inspiration, but then leaves again to talk about the one who is far from the light and thanks only to the awareness of pain, does he decide at last to go seeking him.
Therefore this is the story of a revolution, of a useless journey around one’s own sun, or better still, of a revelation, of what the world is when it ceases to turn. Of how living is just a perception and dying just a manner of change. And every scene, and every selection, and every sign, are impressed on the screen like damage which must be remedied (time: one year), before the sense of things loses sense, loses time and then its scalp.
And while the king loses his sceptre and the people take back the realm, I lose the thread and for rhymes I refer you to the score in which a director’s notes find respite, saving you from this illiterate anxiety.
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Cast & Crew

Directed by: Alessandro Rak

Written by: Alessandro Rak, Luciano Stella

Produced by: Luciano Stella

Editing: Marino Guarnieri

Production Design: Dario Sansone, Alessandro Rak

Original Score: Antonio Fresa, Luigi Scialdone, Antonin Stahly

Sound: Luigi Scialdone, Andrea Cutillo, Dario Della Monica, Francesco Omodeo

Animation: Laura Sammati, Danilo Florio, Antonia Emanuela Angrisani, Mirko Prota, Corrado Piscitelli, Alberto Panico, Alessandro Rak, Flavio Di Biase, Paolo Acampora, Ivan Capiello, Dario Sansone, Giorgio Siravo, Marco Iannaccone, Marino Guarnieri, Sergio Chimenti, Annarita Calligaris, Ilaria Jones, Ivana Verze, Antonio Funaro

Nominations and Awards

  • European Animated Feature Film 2014