Thursday, August 02, 2012

Italian Noir: The Story of Italian Crime Fiction 

Like its Irish counterpart Italian crime fiction is currently undergoing some long overdue critical and commercial success. Starting with  Andrea Camilleri creator of the Inspector Montalbano series of novels, Italian Noir: The Story of Italian Crime Fiction, charts the history of Italian crime and it’s recent rise to fame.

Carlo Emilio Gadda’s novel "That Awful Mess on the Via Merulana" is cited as being the genesis of the Italian thriller. First published in 1957 Gadda’s novel uses a series of murders in Rome to serve as a critique of the fascist government of Benito Mussolini.

Other novelists featuring in the film are Leonardo Sciascia, author of "The Owl" and "The Moro Affair", and Massimo Carlotto, author of the "The Fugutive", whose own life story makes for fascinating reading.

Relatively unknown, in English speaking countries Giancarlo de Cataldo and Barbara Baraldi are also featured. Being a judge de Cataldo reveals he had access to places, people and files which were strictly off limits to other writers.

Finally we are introduced to Carlo Lucarelli whose novel "Almost Blue" was a best seller in Italy and beyond. As well as being a writer Lucarelli presents his owncrime  investigative programme on Italian tv.

If Italian crime fiction has a common theme it is that by the end of the novel things are not so clear cut. A certain ambiguity remains and crimes are often not solved, or, if they are, as many questions as answers remain.
First broadcast in 2010 Italian Noir: The Story of Italian Crime Fiction will serve as an excellent introduction to Italy its crime writers and recent history of political and social problems. Ciao bella.


so...the novelists are characters in the films? Or - ?
Gosh Jessica I guess I didn't make that clear, apologies. The authors are themselves and are interviewed in in film.
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