LUZZU

/ / 2021, Feature Films, Virtual

Virtual Showing 
2021 | Malta | 95 min | Drama
Director: Alex Camilleri
Producers: Rebecca Anastasi, Ramin Bahrani, Alex Camilleri, Oliver Mallia

A hardworking Maltese fisherman, Jesmark is faced with an agonizing choice. He can repair his leaky luzzu – a traditional, multicolored wooden fishing boat – in the hopes of eking out a meager living at sea for his wife and newborn son, just as his father and grandfather did before him. Or he can decommission it in exchange for an EU payout and cast his lot with a sinister black-market operation that is decimating the Mediterranean fish population and the livelihoods of the local families who depend on it. Luzzu won a Sundance Jury Prize for its nonprofessional lead actor Jesmark Scicluna, a real-life Maltese fisherman, and heralds the arrival of writer-director-editor Alex Camilleri. His gripping film operates in the neorealist tradition of Luchino Visconti, Roberto Rosselini, and the Dardenne brothers and calls to mind the work of his mentor Ramin Bahrani (Man Push CartThe White Tiger), also a producer of the film.

Sundance Film Festival 2021 (Winner: Jury Prize for Acting), New Directors/New Films 2021

“Understated in a way that would make the gods of neorealism proud, the film is anchored by the alluring, underlying rage in Scicluna’s lived-in performance.”— Carlos Aguilar, RogerEbert.com

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