Sud Side Stori – La storia vera di Romea e Giulietto (2000) is an unconventional cinematic version of Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet by Italian director Roberta Torre. Blending neorealistic techniques with a non-realistic cinematic aesthetic and a Brechtian-inflected form, the film offers an oneiric and political rewriting of Shakespeare’s tragedy set in mafia-ruled contemporary Palermo. In the city, locals are shocked by the massive and unprecedented spike in African immigrants, who are essentially women. The tragic and impossible love at the centre of the film is indeed between an untalented Sicilian singer, Toni Giulietto, and a Nigerian victim of the international sex trade, Romea Wacoubo. This hopeless romance is representative of the wider social tension in the background due to the conflict between the worshippers of Palermo’s two main patron saints: the white Saint Rosalia and the black Saint Benedict the Moor. The article offers a feminist perspective attuned to both Torre’s take and the female-centred filmic interest. The protagonist of Sud Side Stori is a black immigrant woman and a prostitute who exemplifies the intersectionality of different sources of oppression, which Torre explores and exposes.

A Mediterranean, women-centred rewriting of Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet: Roberta Torre’s Sud Side Stori

Maria Elisa Montironi
2022

Abstract

Sud Side Stori – La storia vera di Romea e Giulietto (2000) is an unconventional cinematic version of Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet by Italian director Roberta Torre. Blending neorealistic techniques with a non-realistic cinematic aesthetic and a Brechtian-inflected form, the film offers an oneiric and political rewriting of Shakespeare’s tragedy set in mafia-ruled contemporary Palermo. In the city, locals are shocked by the massive and unprecedented spike in African immigrants, who are essentially women. The tragic and impossible love at the centre of the film is indeed between an untalented Sicilian singer, Toni Giulietto, and a Nigerian victim of the international sex trade, Romea Wacoubo. This hopeless romance is representative of the wider social tension in the background due to the conflict between the worshippers of Palermo’s two main patron saints: the white Saint Rosalia and the black Saint Benedict the Moor. The article offers a feminist perspective attuned to both Torre’s take and the female-centred filmic interest. The protagonist of Sud Side Stori is a black immigrant woman and a prostitute who exemplifies the intersectionality of different sources of oppression, which Torre explores and exposes.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11576/2703885
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