Gomorrah


Directed by: Matteo Garrone
Written by:Maurizio Braucci, Ugo Chiti, Gianni Di Gregorio, Matteo Garrone, Massimo Gaudioso, Roberto Saviano
Starring: Salvatore Abruzzese, Simone Sacchettino, Salvatore Ruocco, Vincenzo Fabricino, Vincenzo Altamura
Released: May 14, 2009
Grade: A-

In 2006, Italian journalist Roberto Saviano published a book which exposed the activities of the Camorra – a crime organisation based in southern Italy. Since its release, Saviano has received numerous death threats and he now lives under constant police protection. Based on this fact alone, you could say that his book has made an impact.

So what are the Camorra involved in? We’re talking pretty much everything and anything that’s illegal. Toxic waste disposal, drug dealing, high powered firearms, bribery and even fashion design. They are one of the oldest mafia organisations in the world with a history going back many centuries.

Matteo Garrone’s movie is based on Saviano’s novel and shows the Camorra for what they are. It follows several characters – some of which will not be alive by film’s end. It has a gritty, realistic feel and this is particularly evident when you see the way in which some characters are slain. It’s not over dramatised. There’s no chase sequence. These people get a bullet straight between the eyes and through the chest. End of story.

It’s taken almost 12 months for Gomorrah to find its way into Australian cinemas. This time last year, it won the lucrative runner-up prize (otherwise known was the Grand Prix) at the Cannes Film Festival. It also won the best film prize at the 2008 European Film Awards. This is a great honour with previous winners including 4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days (2007), The Lives Of Others (2006) and Hidden (2005).

The film has prompted me to do a little more research on the Camorra and the more I read, the more interesting they are. How can such a crime organisation continue to thrive in this day and age? Is there really that much corruption in the world? If you take the time to check this movie out, you may find yourself asking the same questions.