Episode #27: The Hand of God (Paolo Sorrentino, 2021)

Paolo Sorrentino’s latest film is the semi-autobiographical tale of Fabietto, a young man in Naples whose life is transformed when a terrible tragedy pushes him from an idyllic childhood to somber adulthood. This theme of transition permeates through many aspects of the film, including shifting power dynamics and agency, the cinematography and composition of images, and even modes of transportation. Its cultural context, set in the 1980s, also surfaces real-life figures like Diego Maradona and Antonio Capuano as peripheral, though no less impactful, agents in Fabietto’s story.

The Hand of God is an extraordinary film in Sorrentino’s body of work, stepping away from the world of the powerful and elite and instead focusing on an ordinary, very human subject: himself.

Links:

This episode features the following music excerpts from the film’s soundtrack:

  • “Etude 3” by Nadia Sirota
  • “Napule E'” by Pino Daniele

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