Lo spirito della notte

Manfredo Manfredi
Italia, 2018 / 11’42

Direction, Script, Animation: Manfredo Manfredi Direction assistant, Editing: Giuseppe Spina, Sound, Music: Andrea Martignoni Distribution: Nomadica 

The night is often seen as a place other where the mind ventures as dreams or lucid intellectual speculations come near. The night is often a place of art and it is to this physical and mental space that this short film speaks to. This is how Manfredo Manfredi describes the motivations behind this short film. As in a testament based on memory, the artist returns to his ateliers, in Italy and Africa, at night. Fantasies, anxieties and memories overlap and come to life, until dawn, when the world resumes its daily routine. The new film by a master of Italian animation.

Manfredo Manfredi (Palermo, 1934), after attending the Faculty of Architecture in Rome, in 1958 graduated in Scenography at the Academy of Fine Arts. In 1962, he made the drawings for the Carosello theme song and sets for films, documentaries and television shows. His experimentation in the field of animated cinema began in 1963, with short films of social denunciation such as Ballata per un pezzo da novanta (1966) on Sicilian mafia, or Su sàmbene non est abba (1968), on banditry in Sardinia, which received many awards including the Nastro d’argento as best short film. In 1975, Uva salamanna won the Moscow International Film Festival. In 1977, he won the Oscar nomination for best animated short film with Dedalo, and the Grand Prize at the Ottawa Film Festival. In the following years he made institutional films, TV specials, dozens of commercials and TV theme songs. The most important films of this period, mid-nineties, are splendid adaptations of literary works: the XXVI Canto of Dante’s Inferno, Invisible Cities by Italo Calvino. After 20 years entirely dedicated to painting, he returned to animated cinema with a new film entitled Lo spirito della notte.

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