Panorama | Focus on Italy
A petty thief who prefers wasting his meagre takings on video gambling to spending time in the company of others, teenaged Ermanno (Claudio Segaluscio) has his life altered when he encounters the pregnant Lena (Sandra Drzymalska), a teen from Poland wanting to sell her unborn baby and remain in Italy. Ermanno’s uncle Fabio (Bruno Buzzi) pays Ermanno to watch over Lena and for the two of them to pose as a married couple. This will allow Fabio and his wife, Bianca (Barbara Ronchi) to hoodwink the authorities and adopt the baby with the minimum of state intervention (surrogacy is still illegal in Italy). After the baby girl, Sole, is born, however, Ermanno and Lena begin to see each other differently…
Influenced by the Dardennes and cognizant of his debt to Italian neorealism, first-time director Carlo Sironi chronicles, simply yet powerfully, the growing affection between Ermanno, Lena, and baby Sole. In so doing, he has crafted a quietly poignant take on politics, family, and humanist values, things that are in constant conflict in Italy these days.