Sicilian filmmaker Piero Messina made the move from award-winning short films to the feature-length arena with L’attesa — which was filmed on his home turf in exquisite tones by cinematographer Francesco Di Giacomo — in September of last year when it opened at the Venice Film Festival (scoring a trio of laurels for Messina as a filmmaker and a Golden Lion nomination for the film itself).
Word arrived this past week that Oscilloscope Laboratories will be offering the film to the domestic DVD market place beginning on July 26. Between now and then, L’attesa will continue to work the arthouse circuit, garnering media exposure and consumer awareness in the process.
The ARR works out to 88 days and tickets currently stand at $41,362 — DVD affords the film a wider reach, especially for those out in the ‘burbs who lack access to major metro arthouse venues.
Oscar-winner Juliette Binoche (The English Patient … also nominated for Chocolat) stars as Anna in this film adaptation of Nobel Prize-winner Luigi Pirandello 1920s play, “The Life I Gave You.” Her Italian husband bequeathed her a lavish villa near Mount Etna, on the eastern shore of Sicily and it is here that she comes with a heavy heart.
Awaiting her there is her son’s fiancé/girlfriend, Jeanne (Lou de Laâge — Breathe, as Kitty in 2013 Anna Karenina mini-series, etc.) … and, together they will await his arrival and use the time to get to know each other. Or so it seems.
In actuality, her son Giuseppe (Giovanni Anzaldo) has died (foreshadowed in the opening sequence), but Anna cannot bring herself to acknowledge this.
It’s a bit tricky, but Anna keeps her son alive — metaphorically speaking — by sharing memories and stories with Jeanne, who is kept in the dark about his fate. Constant calls to his cell phone go unanswered, only messages from before the tragedy remain. L’attesa becomes a dance of loss; of despair, that must, at some point, come to an end … but delayed in its finale as long as possible.
L’attesa is presented in Italian and French with English subtitles.