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Futura Review | NYFF 2021

Futura is a documentary that touches on the fears, dreams, anxieties, and future of the Italian youth; however, it feels like it didn’t branch out enough to get different answers to the proposed questions. 

A cooperative venture by three of Italy’s most promising directors — Pietro Marcello, Francesco Munzi, and Alice Rohrwacher — as they go city to city asking the youth of Italy questions about life. How are things currently going with your life? How do you feel about Italy’s current situation and its system? What do you expect to be doing in three to four years? Why do you want to leave Italy? These are the questions they ask the Italian youth.

Futura

“I want to leave. This is a bad place. There’s nothing for me here.” After that response, one of the directors replied with the question we all would say: “Where will you go?” “Anywhere else! I don’t think I’ll find happiness here.” Every kid in their late teens and early twenties has had that thought of leaving because of two reasons. Either you think there is nothing there because you have been living there your entire life and have seen it all or because you have seen it all and it doesn’t bring you the happiness it once brought. 

Most kids don’t have much to say; either they are shy, don’t have the words to describe their feelings, or have no comment on the matter. Nonetheless, a few of them have clear and carefully constructed thoughts that are worthy of a listen. For example, regarding her future, a girl responds with: “I think it’s a common fear. I mean suffering, almost to the point of disappointment.” After that statement, one of the directors asked her why she wasn’t staying in her hometown, and she responded: “We feel the need to evolve away from here so we can create things.” 

It is interesting even though people grow up in different cities, they still have in mind that their hometown isn’t a buyable option for their future. Of course, there is the possibility that their current situation isn’t a good one or other circumstances cursed their past, but the documentary doesn’t dwell on that. Instead, we get the answers to their questions, sometimes feeling a bit repetitive, yet we don’t have the explanation. 

Futura

I know that they don’t have to give us an explanation for everything. Some of the answers I reason with them in plain sight. Be that as it may, I still feel that if you are going to deep dive on such a vulnerable subject, even more exposed now with a pandemic still strolling around, you should have the guts to contemplate the obstacles that life brings you. But, on the other hand, they are kids; kids talking to a stranger who’s asking them about one of the things they would fear the most in life: the future. 

In most cases, swapping your location won’t solve your problems; it will probably add more baggage. These problems are not only set in one nation but worldwide. Anybody can see and connect with these topics as they know what it’s like. Futura paints a portrait of how today’s youth must grow up very fast and how some of them even lose their innocence as life goes on; the problem is that it feels like an incomplete study on its subjects and doesn’t scratch the surface of its exploration.

6/10

By Hector Gonzalez

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