Safari Njema

PerSo Short

By Guido Massimo Calanca and Daniele Vicari
2021, 17’

Sunday, Oct. 02, Méliès Cinema, Via della Viola 1, 6:30 p.m.

Original Title: Safari Njema (Buon Viaggio)

Directors: Guido Massimo Calanca, Daniele Vicari 

Scriptwriters: Guido Massimo Calanca, Sarita Fratini e Daniele Vicari

Director of Photography: Pepperpot Studio

Editing: Pierluigi Darino

Music and Sound mixing: Francesco Giannico

Executive Producers: Alessandro Amato, Luigi Chimienti

Production: dispàrte; Speha Fresia Cooperative Society (ATI leader of  Carry On and Crossing projects); Folias Cooperative Society (ATI leader of DestinAzioni project);

ENAIP Impresa Sociale S.r.l. (capofila dell’ATI del progetto Aurora)

Financed by: REGIONE LAZIO


At the age of 14, Uriel flees  his country in war. He makes a long journey to cross Africa and the desert but in Libya he is interned for three years in a terrible detention center for migrants. He gets to know hunger, disease, the most extreme violence and, even there, war. He survives all this by dreaming of freedom, until one day, with some of his fellow prisoners, he manages to get on a boat and leave for Italy. As soon as he lands on the Sicilian coast, he is sent to the second largest  Center for Asylum Seekers in Italy, which houses 500 people. But even this one, will not be an easy experience.

A story that lives again thanks to the images made by dozens of migrants and collected by Italian journalists and activists.



January 22, 2019, the clearing of the Cara di Castelnuovo di Porto begins. The second Center of largest reception in Italy, in a few days, it is emptied of the approximately 500 guests who lived there and of the 107 cooperative’s operators that managed it. Most of the asylum seekers come sorted in numerous small towns around Italy, while many end up on the street, after losing the status of asylum seeker. This fact surprises and angers the local community which, after years of complicated coexistence with Cara’s guests,  managed to find her own path of integration, collaboration, acceptance and it awakens a sincere spirit of protest that quickly expands nationwide. While the center empties in a few days, the actions in support of the now former guests and operators multiply, as rapidly as journalistic reportages and parliamentary interrogatories do.

On the second day of clearing and evacuation, a band improvises a concert in front of the Cara to bring some support to those waiting to be transferred and to the demonstrators outside the center. An icy wind blows, softly dampened by the afternoon sun. Immersed in a surreal atmosphere, women, children, men, they all listen to the first songs cold and worried.

The buses, loaded with people, leave slowly, headed to unknown destinations unknown in the center and north of  Italy. The Cara’s structure remains only a huge, empty concrete shell, a few steps from the fields of sunflowers and a few tens of meters from the highway. Along the net that separates it from the road garments are hung to dry many clothes: some are shaken by the wind, others have fallen to the ground. A young woman, with a winter jacket, slippers on her feet and a heavy suitcase in her hand, walks away along the streets coasting the center, preceded by a TV operator who films it.

For these people, a journey that seemed finished, or at least suspended,  begins a new itinerary back in time, of weeks, months, years, composed of short fragments captured by those who performed it. Suddenly faces, different languages, sounds, footsteps, places mix far from each other. A boy prepares to leave, with a few objects placed in a backpack; some guys sing a prayer, a family eats something camped in a wood, some women sing and celebrate, safely on the stern of a ship. The sand mixes with the waves of the sea, with the woods of some country in the Balkans, to the snow in the French mountains, to the tear gas fired by the police on the border between Greece and Turkey. The cries of children are one with the screams of fear of whom is rejected. An overflowing rubber dinghy takes in water off the Greek coasts, the gazes terrified of those on board, the prayers of the men who try to empty it of salt water which risks drowning them. The prow of an NGO ship safely plows the waves, the wind blows hard in the sails and a beautiful sunset accompanies her to the next mission on the open sea.

Guido Massimo Calanca

Director, filmmaker, editor, graduate in Directing and Film and Television Programming at the University of Roma Tre, he took his first steps in the world of cinema and of audiovisual as video assist in films The past is a foreign land and Diaz, don’t clean up this blood by Daniele Vicari and for The Discovery of Dawn by Susanna Nicchiarelli, as well as as an aid director and assistant director for numerous short films, video clips and commercials. Since 2006 he works in the audiovisual field, directing and / or editing short films, documentaries, commercials advertising, art videos, fashion videos and author reports.




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SAN LORENZO, 11 AM (2013)

11.01 and 50 seconds: the B-17s of the first formation of American bombers flying over Rome drop several 250 kg bombs on the San Lorenzo district. The tracks, two wagons and a shed of the San Lorenzo freight yard are centered in full, a part of the last disengaged sticks progressively invests the Viale dello Stazione San Lorenzo and the Viale del Verano which is its continuation, the two roads that line the right the railway area.


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Daniele Vicari

He made his directorial debut with Maximum Speed ​​for which he won the David di Donatello for Best Direction debut in 2003, receiving a second David di Donatello for best documentary direction for Il mio Paese in 2007. Among the other numerous Italian and international awards received: Silver Ribbons for Before the Night (2018), Sole Cuore Amore (2016); Pasinetti Award at the Venice Film Festival for La nave dolce (2012); Berlinale Audience Award for Diaz, don’t clean up this blood, a film that received 13 David nominations and won 4; Golden Ciak for Diaz and Maximum Speed; the Sergio Leone Award at Annecy Cinéma Italien and the Fice Award for the best director of the year (2012); In addition to being selected in Cannes, Berlin and Venice, his films have been presented at: Karlovy Vary IFF, Guadalajara IFF, BFI London FF, Thessaloniki Doc FF, Palm Springs IFF, Chicago IFF, Moscow IFF, Hong Kong IFF, Buenos Aires FF, Miami IFF, Stockholm Italian FF.

In 2020 he founded the production company Kon-Tiki with which he is currently working on the film Orlando in co-production with Belgium.

He contributed to founding the “Gian Maria Volonté” Regional Public School of cinema, and there he held the role of Artistic Director since 2011.




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A series based on the novels of the same name by Massimo Carlotto.


The first film shot when the whole world was in lockdown in total isolation and all the sets were closed.

ORLANDO (2022)

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