October 16th, 2008
A review of Gomorrah, which screened this week at The Duke Of Yorks Brighton. Gomorrah is an expose of the day to day life of the Italian Cammorah mob.
Gomorrah is an Italian film, focusing on the lives of 4 people caught up in the Camorra – the Naples mob involved in waste management, the murder of thousands of individuals and major contributors to legal ventures such as the rebuilding of the Ground Zero site in New York.
Unlike American mob movies, this film shys away from the glamorous side of crime and focuses instead on the low end, the kids, money carriers and everyday folk caught up in gang wars and working for the mob.
The film is set in Naples, although we see very little of the city itself. The action focuses on one or two locations, one which is an impressive huge estate of tiny flats, piled one on top of the other. Many of the locations are simply large empty expanses, a sandy wasteland, a deserted river, the desert. This adds a cinematic edge to the film and means its one to catch at the cinema, rather than waiting for DVD.
The film runs at a fairly slow pace, the violence infrequent but bloody and real when it comes. There are several unconnected plot strands, rather than an over arching narrative. In many respects it feels like a dramatised documentary, which is pretty much what it is. The book its based on revealed many truths which the real life Cammora didn’t like, the consequence of which is the author lives under constant police protection in fear of his life.
Many of the films actors were non professionals, but it doesn’t show. Perhaps this is because they were in the most part, merely being themselves. A number were recruited from prison theatre groups, and of those from the outside, 3 have since been arrested for real life crimes.
An intriguing peek at another world.