“Metropolis” is an international contest of short film competition on the topics of work, promoted by the association Statuto dei lavoratori.it with the patronage of Lucana Film Commision, Apulia Film Commision, Matera-Basilicata 2019 Foundation, and public institutions such as Region Basilicata, Province of Matera, City of Matera, University of Bari “Aldo Moro”.
The registration is free.
The top 10 short films of the competition will be screened publicly in Matera, in an attractive location (to be defined).
The 10 short films will be the result of an accurate pre-selection carried out by the Art and Scientific Directors.
The selected works will all be screened as part of the Grand Finale of the competition in the presence of the jury who will preside the ceremony. The jury will be composed of high level professionals in arts and sciences.
After the screening, on 16 july 2016, the jury will evaluate the films and award two cash prizes and will give special mentions.
Cash prizes are as follows:
– Best Short Film: 1,000 Euros;
– Special Jury Prize: 500 euros
“Statutodeilavoratori.it” is a non-profit, apolitical and non-religious association, founded by young scholars and PhDs in labour law at the University of Bari “Aldo Moro”.
The Association aims to promote the deepening and dissemination of studies and research on labour law as well as the exchange of ideas and information among scholars and the political, social and economic actors.
In particular, the association intends to test innovative methods of dissemination of economical, legal and social sciences, suitable for the diffusion of their knowledge in the whole society, and not only among scholars and operators of these matters, in the belief that this will contribute to the material and immaterial growth of citizens, the advancement of entrepreneurship, the strengthening of social solidarity and civic spirit, the renewal of society from the perspective of a more free, joyful and conscious fulfilment of all human beings. The Association supports the scientific research in the economic and legal and social sciences, and is also a promoter of cultural events and technical and professional training courses in the field of employment law, collective labour law, industrial relations and sociology.
Manifesto by scientific director Prof. Roberto Voza
«Scenes of work, or better of workers who leave the factory. Thus the history of cinema begins. La Sortie des Ouvriers de l’usine Lumière à Lyon (The exit of the workers from the Lumière factory in Lyon) is one of the films that open the first public cinema show, on December 28, 1895 in Paris. What is represented is not the pain of work, but the exit time from the gates, fulfilling and comforting for spectators. And there were no sweat suits, but Belle Époque gowns.
Over time, the eye of the camera has been able to focus better on strain and exploitation, as well as on the parable of redemption and pride that accompanied the century of work.
Now the XX century is behind us, but the work and, above all, History is not finished. The working class, however, has become certainly almost invisible (and we do not believe that it ended up all in paradise), and cinema focusing on labour has filled up with fragments and regrets, doubts and contradictions, such as those ones that pervade Ken Loach’s characters.
Mimi Metallurgico no longer exists or, if he does, is not at centre of the stage. The iconography of the work has no longer a reference key figure. Perhaps there is Saint Precarious, the ironic and bitter picture of a labour etymologically “favoured”, i.e. granted by grace, and therefore inevitably uncertain and provisional.
So, in the space of a short film, can one give voice and face to work, without rhetoric, without stereotypes? A vivid click, not a faded cliché.
This is a question we ask young (perhaps aspiring to be) directors of today, in the land of the Sassi, an open-air set at all times and now European Capital of Culture».
Manifesto by art director Antonio Andrisani
«In the visionary Metropolis (1926) by Fritz Lang, class conflicts are moved to a dystopian future and the cinema has begun to deal with the relationship between man and work. Charlie Chaplin in 1936, pressing levers and buttons, blocks the production of the infernal assembly line. The great American director owes a lot to Renè Clair who inspired him with his “À nous la liberté” only a few years earlier. In 1971, Elio Petri, with The Working Class Goes to Heaven, sets foot again in an alienating factory, this time with ferocity: the blue-collar “Lulu”, modern Charlot, tells the relationship between man and machine, between personal fulfilment and production time. In 1999 Laurent Cantet with Human Resources delivers an intense work on the practice of dismissing in order to rationalize the workforce inside the factories. In 2008, Paolo Virzi introduces us in the bitter world of call centres and I win the first prize, in the short film competition that the trade union CGIL holds on the occasion of its centenary, with “31” telling with irony the job insecurity.
This brief review that has no claim to be complete, however, leads me to wonder: do we live in Metropolis today?
The world of labour has experienced various transformations and despite some interesting cases, cinema has not paid to it the proper attention, or rather, has stopped to tell the collective epic of the labour and its fermenting choral quality falling back instead on individual and intimate events and tales.
The places, the factory, the city, the sea, the land, the civil rights, solidarity, participation, peace above all else. With “Metropolis” we want to re-open a window on the images of these great values. Small, great stories that prompt us to reflect on social changes that women, men, children, elderly people often live with daily discomfort».