Morning, Night (15)
Written by Marco Bellochio, Anna Laura Braghetti and Paola Tavella, Directed
by Marco Bellochio
Screening at FACT from 31st December 2004 - 6th January 2005
In 1978, a group of would-be revolutionaries kidnapped the Italian Prime
Minister, Aldo Moro. Calling themselves the ‘Brigate Rosse’
or Red Brigades, the group genuinely believed their actions would trigger
a huge working class uprising. Instead, the general public was horrified
by their actions, and supported the resulting clampdown on left wing groups.
Good Morning, Night is the story of the two months between Moro’s
capture and killing. Or at least it is one version of events.
As a piece of cinema, the film works very well. Bellochio’s use
of lighting and archive footage brings the viewer right into the claustrophobic
flat that imprisons both the hostage and his hijackers. A sense of creeping
despondency pours from the screen as the expected revolution fails to
materialise, and Maya Sansa is captivating as Chiara - the reluctant female
kidnapper struggling to reconcile her Catholic upbringing with her desire
for political change.
Good Morning, Night is based on The Prisoner – a book
by one of the kidnappers. Like Chiara she is clearly full of remorse for
her late seventies activities. The Brigades are portrayed as unfeeling
cultish terrorists, more interested in their own egos and dogma than the
working class they supposedly represented. On the other hand, the Prime
Minister was just a kindly old man who just wanted to get back to his
family. Certainly, this is the picture that the Italian establishment
would like to see presented, but perhaps other former Brigaders would
have a different, more interesting perspective.