NOTTURNO Documentary


AFI Programmer Ken Jacobson leads a conversation with director Gianfranco Rosi.

Racked by war, the bordering areas of Iraq, Kurdistan, Syria and Lebanon have, in recent years, seen untold human suffering and devastation. But, even as a return to normal remains elusive, if not unattainable, life goes on. With this beautiful assemblage of arresting images and intimate character moments, Academy Award®-nominee Gianfranco Rosi (FIRE AT SEA) manages the cinematic equivalent of alchemy. He focuses his lens on the disassembled pieces of these war-torn societies and shows how simple acts of everyday life, ritual and performance can bridge the gap between despair and some measure of inner peace. The culmination of a three-year journey across the region, the symphonic brilliance of NOTTURNO firmly establishes Rosi as a bona fide master in the documentary world. –Ken Jacobson

Gianfranco Rosi, born in Asmara, Eritrea, attended university in Italy and graduated from NYU Film School in 1985. His films include BOATMAN (1993), BELOW SEA LEVEL (2008), EL SICARIO – ROOM 164 (2010), SACRO GRA (2013), and FIRE AT SEA (2016). He was awarded the Golden Lion at the Venice Film Festival for SACRO GRA and the Golden Bear for Best Film at the Berlin International Film Festival for FIRE AT SEA, which was also nominated for an Academy Award®.


Country: Italy, France, Germany

Year: 2020

Director: Gianfranco Rosi

Screenwriter: Gianfranco Rosi

Producers: Donatella Palermo, Gianfranco Rosi, Paolo Del Brocco, Serge Lalou, Camille Laemlé

Director of Photography: Gianfranco Rosi

Editor: Jacopo Quadri

Running Time (minutes): 100

Languages: Arabic, Kurdish