Labor (Interdit aux chiens et aux Italiens): An Animated Journey through History and Emigration

Labor (Interdit aux chiens et aux Italiens): An Animated Journey through History and Emigration

In the picturesque context of Ughettera at the end of the XNUMXth century, a peasant family, the Ughettos, stands out as the protagonist of a journey through the challenges of work, war and emigration. This overwhelming saga finds its expression in the animated film "Manodopera (Interdit aux chiens et aux Italiens)", directed by Alain Ughetto, a work that embraces the past of Italy and France, transporting viewers into a world of sweetness and historical reflection.

Cinema release Thursday 31 August 2023 

The Borgata Ughettera: A Lived Story: The narrative of the film takes us to Borgata Ughettera, not an imaginary place, but a fraction of Giaveno, a few steps from Turin, in front of the imposing Monviso. Alain Ughetto, born in Lyon but tied to his Italian roots, chose to return to this locality to weave the stories of his ancestors. Through the warm voice of Ariane Ascaride, the grandmother and other predecessors come to life in the ideal dialogue with the director, an intimate conversation that becomes the creative impulse of the film.

A Magical Representation: Using the stop motion technique and 23 cm high plasticine puppets, Alain Ughetto pays homage to those who have been defined as "the last" of Italy, those of whom the State only remembered when it requested their sacrifice in the wars of the last century. The film, steeped in sweetness, also preserves a historical accuracy that transports the audience to the heart of peasant and working-class Italy, while going through the challenges of poverty, world wars and the difficulties of emigration.

The Meaning of “Interdit aux chiens et aux Italiens”: The very title of the film, "Interdit aux chiens et aux Italiens", symbolizes the discriminating aspect of the time. The father, towards his children, explains the meaning of this prohibition with a pitiful lie, but it is a prohibition that reflects the harsh reality of Italian emigration and their ambivalent reception in foreign countries. This prohibition becomes a key moment in which the father chooses to call the place where they live "Paradise", thus preserving a hope that perhaps one day will come true.

A Passage of Witness and Working Hands: The film highlights the passing of the baton through the generations, represented through the hands that work and act in the setting. These hands represent the connection between farmers and workers of the past, while also showing the significant role women played in the world of work, especially during wars when men were engaged in combat.

A Call to Teaching and Remembrance: Through the artistic technique chosen and the narrative tones adopted, "Manodopera (Interdit aux chiens et aux Italiens)" reveals itself as a work that should be shared in compulsory schools. This film invites young minds to discover their country's past, strengthening awareness and understanding of important historical events. At a time when the topic of “migrants” is often treated with contempt, the film echoes the words of Max Frisch: “We were looking for arms. People came”, a warning to consider the dignity and humanity behind each individual.

Conclusion: “Labour (Interdit aux chiens et aux Italiens)” is much more than a simple animated film; it is a bridge across time connecting the past to the present. Through a sensitive and engaging story, Alain Ughetto offers us an extraordinary insight into the challenges and victories that our ancestors faced, leaving an indelible imprint on the fabric of Italian and French history.

Technical data

Original title Forbidden to dogs and Italians
Original language French, Italian and German
Country of Production France, Italy, Switzerland
Year 2022
Duration 70 min
Relationship 2.35:1
Gender animation, historical
Regia Alan Ughetto
Film script Alain Ughetto, Alexis Galmot, Anne Paschetta
Production house Les Films du tambour de soie, Vivement lundi!, Foliascope, Lux Fugit, Graffiti Film, Ocidental Filmes, Nadasdy Film SARL
Distribution in Italian Lucky red
Music Nicola Piovani

Exit to the cinema Thursday 31 August 2023

Original voice actors
Ariadne Ascaris: Caesarea
Stefano Pagani : Louis
Diego Giuliani : Antonio and Alcide
Cristoforo Gato : Joseph and Severino
Lorenzo Pasquier : Vincent
Laura Devoti: Luisa
Bruno Fontaine : Nino, Gérard and a French worker
Thierry Buenafuente : René, stretcher bearer
Carlo Ferrante : the bonecutter
Gaia Saitta: a nun
Aude Carpenters : Giusepina and Marie-Cécile
Pascal Gimenez: A recruiter and team leader
Jacques Chambon : a stretcher bearer, a foreman and a surveyor
Moritz Korff and Martin Prill : German soldiers
Walery Doumenc: A recruiting team leader
Chiara Collet: a pumpkin neighbor and a wedding guest
Luigi Buta: a wedding guest, a man and a worker
Luca Bertolati: the priest and an official of the National Fascist Party
Sara Cesaretti and Magali Nardi: the girls of Masca
Toni Di Stasio: official of the National Fascist Party
Camille Gimenez, Johan Cardot Da Costa and Tom Guittet : children
Alain Ughetto : the narrator and the photographer
Cécile Rittweger, Mikael Sladden and Salomé Richard : additional voices