The film that established Ermanno Olmi as one of the most important young directors in European cinema
A small story about personal dismay that reveals a world undergoing complete transformation
A work that exudes authenticity, a mix of neorealism and Italian-style nouvelle vague
With his second film, Ermanno Olmi established himself as one of the most sensitive and personal young directors on the European scene. At first glance, the film appears to be the simple story of a missed love opportunity between an awkward young man from out of town and a delightful yet unreliable girl. Olmi’s brushstrokes are both incredibly delicate and profound, and this alone serves to make it an unforgettable film. However, the director is far too attentive to the dynamics at play in society to be satisfied with just that: it is also an extraordinarily lucid portrait of a world undergoing a complete transformation. The film uniquely and insightfully captures the transition from a rural agriculture-based society to an industrialised one, with all the losses and confusion brought about by the economic boom. Shot using only natural lighting and non-professional actors, Il posto exudes authenticity. Its faces and silences are sufficient to suggest emotions, the thrills of love, universal hopes, barely expressed suffering. A delicately composed film that touches the depths of modern man and modern times. A mix of neorealism and nouvelle vague.
A young man from the provinces travels to Milan in the hope of being offered a job with a big company. During the admissions test he meets a girl who likes to be called “Magalì”. Both of them gain employment: she as a typist, and he, temporarily, as an office messenger. However, they lose touch with each other. He goes to a party on New Year’s Eve to meet her but ends up alone. The suicide of a co-worker will eventually offer him the chance for a long-awaited desk.
The film was digitally restored from the original negatives by Cineteca di Bologna, in collaboration with Titanus. The restoration work was carried out by L’Immagine Ritrovata laboratory.