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BBFC RatingA Chiara

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Director(s)Jonas Carpignano
Writer(s)Jonas Carpignano
CountryItaly, France
Running Time2HR 1MINS
SeasonMain Programme

The latest from acclaimed filmmaker Jonas Carpignano, A Chiara is a gritty neorealist drama that tells the coming-of-age story of a teenage girl grappling with the sins of her father and the true meaning of family.

In an astonishing, award-winning central performance, Swamy Rotolo plays Chiara, the 15-year-old daughter of the affluent Guerrasio family (all played by Rotolo’s real-life family) who live a seemingly idyllic life in the Calabrian city of Gioia Tauro, a small town closely associated with the province’s criminal organisations.

When her father Claudio (Claudio Rotolo) suddenly disappears after her sister’s 18th birthday party, Chiara embarks on a dangerous investigation that draws her deeper into the mafia underworld, gradually discovering that her family’s ties to the local crime world are more troubling than she thought. As she gets closer to the truth, Chiara is forced to decide what she wants to believe and ultimately what kind of future she wants for herself. 

The third in his loosely-connected ‘Calabrian trilogy’ (following Mediterranea and A Ciambra), Carpignano’s acclaimed latest is a compelling depiction of a young girl’s loss of innocence, and how the social fabric of a community has a determining effect on one’s moral compass. Vividly brought to life by Tim Curtin’s (Beasts of the Southern Wild) cinematography as well as its powerful, naturalistic performances, the film won the Europa Cinemas Label prize for best European film, in the Cannes 2021 Directors’ Fortnight.

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