Another great Italian film is about to come out: Ruggine. A great sound track, too. It’s not only because Valeria Solarino stars in it, though that doesn’t hurt. It’s the subject matter: the wounds of the past that never heal. They are so important because they are so determining.
The most salient passage in the Bible evokes the Tree of Life of the Garden of Eden, re-situates it in the new heavens and the new earth, and says, “the leaves of the Tree are for the healing of the nations … nothing accursed will be there anymore” (Rev 22:2-3). The burden of apocalyptic literature is that of providing an alternative to the reflex of returning to the scene of the crime. Better said, the scene of the crime is evoked in the most universal of terms, and then transcended in the most universal of terms.
Solarino’s comment on what it meant to make the film:
Non mi ero mai soffermata a pensare quanto sia difficile cancellare i traumi, anche piccoli, che colpiscono un bambino. Si cresce, si vive una vita nella normalità, ma se capita qualcosa che fa riaffiorare quella memoria, la ferita si riapre e si avverte il disagio di allora, forte come allora.
“I never took the time before to think about how difficult it is to wash away the trauma, even just small incidents of trauma, inflicted on a child. You grow up, you live a normal life, but then something happens that makes the memory come to the surface. The wound re-opens, and you feel the same discomfort as before, as strong as before.”