The next movie that I selected as part of the Italian Film Festival this year is La cosa giusta (The Right Thing). I watched this right after a 150-minute movie, Baaría – I know, what was I thinking? 🙂
After seeing La giusta distanza (The Right Distance), I was intrigued by the theme of this movie. The same actor who played in La giusta distanza is also in this movie, Ahmed Hafiene. It tells a story of Khalid (Ahmed Hafiene) who has just been released from prison – he harboured Al-Qaida terrorists in Germany. Two police agents are asked to tail him and see whether he conducts anything illegal – Duccio (Ennio Fantastichini), an experienced and jaded cop – and Eugene (Paolo Briguglia), a bright young policeman who can speak Arabic fluently. They end up befriending Khalid and when Khalid is deported to Tunisia, Eugene tracks him down while he’s on his honeymoon with tragic personal consequences.
The movie highlights the brashness of youth and the drive to do the right thing in such a complex situation. Eugene wants to help Khalid pass some photos and a letter to his wife – which is construed by the Tunisian police as aiding a terrorist suspect. The movie also depicts the mistrust and cautiousness of different society groups – whilst the movie is less ‘personal’ than La giusta distanza, it does nevertheless portray the complexity of the issue.
Marco Campogiani directs the movie with a sensitivity that does not favour one side over the other – as a terrorist suspect, Khalid cannot get a job and support from the people around him – however, the interests of the country and the society at large cannot be ignored either.