A film by Erik Gandini
The figure of the Italian Prime Minister, Silvio Berlusconi, acts as a pretext for analyzing the use of television by leaders in Videocracy. Like no one else, the TV-magnate has influenced the content of commercial television in Italy. His TV-channels, known for their over-exposure of almost naked girls, are seen by many as a mirror of his own taste and personality. In a videocracy the key to power is the image.
Today 80 percent of the Italian population has television as their prime source of information. According to the documentary Italian television has most consciously been turned into a marketing channel, bringing the message to the masses; “have fun and forget the harsh reality for a moment”. The most important thing is to be noticed and seen; stardom, money and people’s admiration then come automatically.
The documentary has been a victim of the reality it reflects as it was censored by Italian public television.
The director Erik Gandini conceived this project when he moved from Italy to Sweden at the end of the 80s to study Film at Stockholm University and saw the difference between the television in the two countries. Gandini was perplexed when he compared the contents of the Swedish channels with the Italian ones. “I still remember my surprise when I saw that national television didn’t show commercials, there were very few naked women and films were in original version with subtitles”, explains the director.
In this way, he reveals both an unlikely story and the reality of a television Italian Republic, where no one is surprised that a girl goes from being a cabaret star on the small screen to being Minister for Gender Equality. All of it developed by just one man, Berlusconi, who, first as a television magnate and then as Prime Minister, has created his own system of television and political entertainment over the past three decades.
Ricky Canevali, Lele Mora, Marella Giovannelli, Silvio Berlusconi, Fabio Calvi, Fabrizio Corona
Directed by: Erik Gandini
Cinematography by: Manuel Alberto
Film editing: Johan Söderbergh
Music: Johan Söderbergh
Producer: Erik Gandini
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