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Happy as Lazzaro (12A)

Curators' Picks

A young Lazzaro in a shipping yard bemused at the snow

This enchanting film is an anachronistic tale of one young man's irresistible joy and painful naiveté.

In a small Italian village untouched by the passage of time, Lazzaro is an impoverished sharecropper so unerringly happy, he is often mistaken for being simple-minded. Befriended by a young nobleman with a wild imagination, an improbable friendship begins taking Lazzaro from rural poverty to the chaos of the city, swerving between a neo- and magical realism.Alice Rohrwacher’s third feature is a poetic fable that illustrates the harsher realities of corruption and class in modern Italy.

'I chose this film because I’ve never seen anything quite like it; I don’t usually pick favourites, but Happy as Lazzaro is the film that made the biggest impression on me in 2019. Alice Rohrwacher deftly deals with issues of exploitation in this time-travelling story of a gentle soul who appears to live outside of modern society.'

Julia Brow, Cinema Team

Italy 2018 Dir Alice Rohrwacher 97 min

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Barbican Cinema 3

Barbican Cinema 3