"Non Essere Cattivo" by Claudio Caligari - A JCU Screening

"Non Essere Cattivo" Producer, Simone Isola

On the far left, Professor Federica Capoferri with Simone Isola, producer of “Non Essere Cattivo”

On February 20, 2017 the Department of Modern Languages and Literature hosted the screening of Non Essere Cattivo (Don’t Be Bad), a 2015 Italian drama film, directed by Claudio Caligari. Simone Isola, who produced it for Kimerafilm, introduced the screening.

Non Essere Cattivo is Claudio Caligari’s third movie, after Amore Tossico (1983) and L’Odore Della Notte (1998). Non Essere Cattivo is set in 1995, the year synthetic drugs were first introduced in Italy. It tells the story of two long-time friends, Cesare and Vittorio, played by Luca Marinelli and Alessandro Borghi, who make extensive use of drugs as a way to escape their daily lives. Italian actor Valerio Mastandrea – who starred in Caligari’s previous film – also helped produce it.

Non Essere Cattivo returns to the setting of Amore Tossico ten years later, and overall serves as the possible conclusion of Caligari’s trilogy. Professor of Italian Language and Literature Federica Capoferri said that the film is a homage to Italian director Pier Paolo Pasolini. The location of Ostia, near Rome, played a crucial role in Pasolini’s art and life while the name of one of the characters, Vittorio, refers directly to Pasolini’s first film Accattone (1961).

Simone Isola

Simone Isola, producer of “Non Essere Cattivo”

Producer Simone Isola described Non Essere Cattivo as being in line with the values of Kimerafilm. The production company was started by a group of students who wanted to make art cinema, a difficult task considering how comedies dominate Italy’s market.

Due to Caligari’s illness, everyone involved in making the movie was focused on completing it as soon as possible,  as they weren’t sure they would finish it in time. Caligari died soon after shooting the last scenes of Non Essere Cattivo. The movie was presented at the 72nd Venice International Film Festival, and went on to win numerous awards. It was also chosen to represent Italian cinema at the 2016 Academy Awards, but was then excluded from the short-list.