Menocchio, the new film by Alberto Fasulo and produced by Nadia Trevisan, recounts an incident set in Italy at the time of the Counter-Reformation. The documentary director who in 2014 made his feature-length fiction debut with TIR, which won the Golden Marc'Aurelio Award for Best Film at the Rome Film Fest, now returns with his sophomore effort, which is in the International Competition at the upcoming edition of the Locarno Film Festival.
Menocchio is being produced by Nefertiti Film ( by EWA member Nadia Trevisan), together with Rai Cinema and in co-production with Romania's Hai-Hui Entertainment (Bogdan Craciun), with contributions from the Italian Ministry of Cultural Heritage and Activities. It has secured backing from the Friuli Venezia Giulia Audiovisual Fund, the CNC ‐ Romanian National Film Center, the Friuli Venezia Giulia Film Commission and the Trentino Film Commission.
Italy. Late 1500s. The Roman Catholic Church, feeling its hegemony threatened by the incumbent Protesant Reformation, launches a systematic, ideological State war pursuing total control of faith.
The new Confessional, designed in this period, is transformed from a place to console one's spirit to a court to judge one's thoughts.
Eavesdropping, spying on and reporting one's neighbour becomes compulsory; failure to report means excommunication, prison and eventually burning at the stake.
Menocchio, an old, stubborn, self-taught miller living in a small village in the mountains of Friuli, decides to rebel. Sought for questioning about his possible heresy, he ignores the pleas of friends and family and decides to face trial.
Is he tired of oppression, abuse, taxes and injustice but he is also genuinely convinced that he's own worth as a man is equal to that of the bishops, inquisitors or even the Pope.
And he really believes that he might succeed to convince them to go back to the Christian ideal of poverty and love.