B R I E F   S Y N O P S I S
In one of the most acclaimed Italian films in recent years, director Matteo Garrone tells the engaging, sometimes comic story of Peppino (Ernesto Mahieux), a middle-aged dwarf and skilled taxidermist who becomes obsessed with a tall, hunky young man (Valerio Foglia Manzillo) with a friendly disposition and a passion for animals. The men's friendship blossoms until a young woman (Elisabetta Rocchetti) comes between them and a unique love triangle develops. Winner of two Italian Academy Awards, for Best Screenplay and Best Supporting Actor (Mahieux).
  The Embalmer

Once upon a time there was a very small man, as short as a child who never grew, who lived in a house full of animals that he had stuffed. Stuffing animals was his passion and his job. It was also a way of dreaming of exotic adventures and owning the beauty of perfect bodies, since he was almost a freak of nature. One day, as he wandered around past the cages of a zoo looking for more animals to stuff, he saw a tall boy with a kindly face and a statuesque body…

The Embalmer can be told even like a black fable, a variation of Beauty and the Beast without a happy ending. Yet it began and got its idea from a crime committed several years ago in Rome near the central train station.

In the film, the story is set between the North and the South, between the monstrosity of the Villaggio Coppola, a kind of necropolis of the future, a complex of cement lots and unauthorised skyscrapers built with the complicity of the Camorra, near Naples, along the deserted, degraded coast next to the Via Domiziana, and the foggy, boring countryside, rows of orderly houses, all alike, of the Po Valley. Two different landscapes, two different ways of dreaming of happiness in an Italy with little sunshine and warmth, oppressed by a single blanket of suffocating sky. Where one fears waking up and seeing reality as it is. Over this background, Peppino, Valerio and Deborah move, a strange trio, three "animals" on a zoo safari apparently without a cage…


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