An Italian American Film Festival at Montclair State University is being presented by The Italian American Student Organization, The Department of Spanish and Italian, The Dean's Office of the College of the Humanities and Social Sciences, and FIERI Northern New Jersey. The festival will commence Thursday, February 1st, at 7:00 p.m. in Brantl Lecture Hall in Dickson Hall, with the film Tanabèss by Luisa Pretolani. Ms. Pretolani will answer questions from the audience after the screening. Subsequent dates and guests will be: February 22nd with directors Cara De Vito and Kym Ragusa; March 1st with director Nancy Savoca, March 15th with Dr. Fred Gardaphè; March 29th with the Italian American Short Film Night. All screenings will be in Brantl, will begin at 7:00 p.m., and are free and open to the general public.
Tanabèss (1997) is the story, set in the summer of 1972 in Ravenna, Italy, of a young man Gibo's efforts to make money by fishing and smuggling in order to visit his girlfriend Yonna in Denmark. Two key figures in his life - his spiritual mentor, his anarchist-Communist friend - disapprove of his decision to leave everything behind. Gibo finds solace instead with Bubus, the "Owner of the River." Gibo's daily life is interrupted by the arrival of Orcinamum, and African man who becomes Gibo's companion for the summer. By the end of the summer, Gibo has made enough money to leave for his Danish dream. But like every dream, the awakening can often be quite unexpected. In Italian with English subtitles. This film was selected as the only Italian feature film at The International Film Festival in Portugal (9/98) and the New York International Independent Film and Video Festival (5/99).
Luisa Pretolani started her career in New York producing documentaries on gender and emigration. Her past documentary projects New York/Ravenna: One Way and Things I Take earned several awards, including Special Mention at the Mixed Messages Festival at the New School University in New York (6/98), A Special Mention at the World Population Video Festival in Boston (10/97) and a First Runner's Up at the American Film Institute in LA (7/97). Ms. Pretolani is currently in post-production of her second feature film Tizca, and is raising funds for her next documentary on women and war, Leaving/Living. For more information on her films, visit these websites: www.pahni.com, www.tanabess.com, www.tizca.it