Screened as part of NZIFF 2016

Suburra 2015

Directed by Stefano Sollima

This bloody, brutal crime saga boasts the epic sprawl of the mob classics it emulates, but with a lurid energy all of its own. With a throbbing score from electronic heavyweights M83.

France/Italy In Italian with English subtitles
135 minutes DCP
R18 (violence, offensive language, drug use and sex scenes)

Director

Producers

Riccardo Tozzi
,
Giovanni Stabilini
,
Marco Chimenz

Screenplay

Sandro Petraglia
,
Stefano Rulli
,
Giancarlo De Cataldo
,
Carlo Bonini

Photography

Paolo Carnera

Editor

Patrizio Marone

Production designer

Paki Meduri

Costume designer

Veronica Fragola

Music

Pasquale Catalano
,
M83

With

Pierfrancesco Favino (Filippo Malgradi)
,
Elio Germano (Sebastiano)
,
Claudio Amendola (Samurai)
,
Alessandro Borghi (Numero 8)
,
Greta Scarano (Viola)
,
Giulia Elettra Gorietti (Sabrina)
,
Antonello Fassari (Sebastiano’s father)
,
Jean-Hughes Anglade (Cardinal Berchet)
,
Adamo Dionisi (Manfredi Anacleti)
,
Giacomo Ferrara (Spadino Anacleti)

Festivals

Rotterdam 2016

Elsewhere

A rush of fresh blood to a fine Italian tradition, it doesn’t take long for Stefano Sollima’s enthralling new crime saga Suburra to transcend its familiar parts. As we begin, a crime lord (known only as ‘Samurai’) has started actioning plans to amass beachfront property for an Atlantic City-style gambling paradise. But as Sollima’s web of desperate players quickly spreads, it seems nobody is above getting their hands dirty for a piece of the action. Implicating a cast of politicians, prostitutes, crooks and clergymen (to name a few), Suburra relishes in playing its multiple threads against each other in brutal, unpredictable ways. Bribery, blackmail, kidnapping and murder are just a handful of plot turns to look forward to.

But as the bullets fly, Sollima is stringing up a damning portrait of Rome’s upper echelon, in which corruption rains relentlessly and it’s the everymen struggling beneath that get drenched. It seems the real-life resonances were felt too; Suburra proved such a sensation with audiences in its home country that Netflix immediately commissioned a follow-up television series for 2017. — JF

Suburra is an atmospheric, fast-paced thriller, which draws on an earlier Italian genre tradition that went missing in action somewhere in the mid 70s, one that managed to be stylish and a little vulgar at the same time. It also taps into another even older tradition, a vision of Rome, the Eternal City, as a decadent succubus, a sink of corruption where everything – sex, votes, even the priesthood – can be bought for a price.” — Lee Marshall, Screendaily