After his iconic film was screened at Arte at 11pm tonight Life is beautiful, Frank Capra, the leading director of the 30s and 40s, releases in an unreleased documentary Frank Capra, once in the United States. An important picture of this Sicilian immigrant who started with nothing.
Her films have brought millions (TV) viewers around the world to tears from laughter. Frank Capra was inducted into the Hall of Fame for Best Hollywood Directors and made his mark in the best history of American cinema (called the “Capra Touch”). Who did not move forward Life is beautiful (1946), L’extravagant Mr. Acts (1936), or even The man on the street (1941), were all those modern fairy tales inspired with idealism, humor and deep humanity? All of these masterpieces we call “feel good movies” today will inevitably end with a moving “happy ending”. Was this positive way of looking at life, against the greed of the bourgeois world – the way to glorify the “American way of life” through the courage and stubbornness of a hero from the general public – all of his films in general – was it a reflection of Frank Capra’s personality? Who is this Best Director, the first director to collect five coveted Oscars for his romantic comedy at the age of 37? New York – Miami (1934)?
Inferiority and social revenge
This is the whole point of this documentary, directed by Dmitry Korts, which, while reviewing the life of the artist and his contribution to the 7th art, is concerned with the man behind the public figure. Because until his death in 1991, Frank Capra, who published his autobiography in 1971, tried to cover up the dark moments of his existence, turning it into a beautiful fairy tale like his films, where The Good always conquers evil. Nevertheless his life saw the role of misery and humiliation. Frank Capra, an American who glorified his father through his works, was first invited Francesco Rosario Capra. At the age of 6, he disembarked with his three brothers and his parents, the uneducated Sicilians, from a boat that had settled on Ellis Island in New York Harbor in the early 20th century. His first impression of America was not good. He even hated this host country for welcoming these poor parents so badly that he was forced to work hard to raise a few bucks and feed their children. The latter were also forced to work at a very young age to survive in the Italian ghetto of Los Angeles, where his family failed. As he grew up, Francesco, determined to escape this tragedy through studies, continued to feel the contempt and racism of other young people in the upper classes. From this social rejection, the young man gained a strength to cope with suffering, a flawless ambition to climb a social ladder. When he was able to set foot in Hollywood studios, he had an amazing rise (thanks to an innate talent for directing, and it is a pity that the documentary did not emphasize much about it, thanks to a collaboration with the screenwriter Robert Riskin). According to Frank Capra, making popular films was an Americanly accepted way of initially despising him, glorifying him for caricature, but with immense talent. The comedy-franchise was narrated by Didier Sandra member and nurtured by film juices and interviews, making the filmmaker a very interesting and rich documented portrait.