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A“mockumentary” (according to Wikipedia) “is a type of movie or television show depicting fictional events but presented as a documentary”. Some mockumentaries are evidently fictional, others are more sophisticated and some others are so accurate and realistic that it would take Sherlock Holmes to disclose them. A well-done mockumentary is a spark of genius, a weird creep in reality revealing a parallel dimension, a place in which everything is possible. Thinking about it, mockumentaries are the comic answer to the age-old question: what is the reality?

We’ve put up a little experiment, four shorts that play with reality in a poetic, brilliant and oniric way. One thing you should not doubt: it’s all true!

The selected shorts

by Alessandro Zucconi – Concorto Film Festival

Apollo 11 ½, Olaf Held, Germany, 2017
The Christmas Light Killer, James P. Gannon, USA, 2016
Maialetto della Nurra (Nurra’s Lil’ Pig), Marco Antonio Pani, Italy, 2016
Voyage Spatial, Guillermo A. Chaia, Canada, 2016

Apollo 11 ½ – Olaf Held
seen by Virginia Carolfi

The first manned moon landing represented a groundbreaking moment for the whole humanity, with huge political, social, economic and cultural consequences. However, the State of Wyoming experienced a more immediate and disturbing effect. This is the story of a secret (and most unexpected) NASA mission; if you’ve always smelt something fishy about the Apollo 11, this short will confirm your suspects. Appropriate footage from the ’60s and naive aesthetics make this film a pleasant cosmic divertissement on the notes of Gustav Holst’s “The Planets”.

The Christmas Light Killer – James P. Gannon
seen by Carlotta Magistris

A 2016 short movie by James P. Gammon, The Christmas Light Killer is the ultimate cinematographic example of what the mockumentary genre is: a fictional concept represented by a documentarist point of view where, thanks to fictional interviews and journalistic framings, the figure of a man whose job is to turn off Christmas lights at the end of the night is, with all the personal consequences towards his relationship with the festivity, defined and investigated. It’s hard to imagine this concept as a non-realistic one, because of his effectiveness in the direction work and in the conceptual point of view. Starting from the alleged experience of the protagonist, the short expresses an interesting standpoint about the contemporary society’s relationship with traditional festivities, often experienced as a social obligation and emptied of their original essence.

Maialetto della Nurra (Nurra’s Lil’ Pig) – Marco Antonio Pani
seen by Virginia Carolfi

What could be the reaction of a Sardinian piglet after an intense cinema session? A sweet and delirious short, a tribute to classic cinema and to the power of images, an ironic consideration on food adulteration and an unexpected parallel between Sardinia and the homeland of Concorto. Icing on the cake: the Sardinian language.

Voyage Spatial – Guillermo A. Chaia
seen by Carlotta Magistris

Voyage Spatial, a 2016 short movie by Guillermo A.Chaia, analyses in six minutes the life circle of a love story seen by the point of view of the male protagonist, represented as a sort of astronaut coming from another dimension. He reports the emotional dynamics and his own sensations in an aseptic way, defining the experience as a “mission”. On an aesthetically appreciable background, the paradox of this participant observation, based on analytical data – particularly interesting is the recurrent use of percentage to represent the good or bad emotional waves – contributes to building an effective love story, and the viewer finds on the screen a rather truthful and smart representation of emotional dynamics, at times disguised as cliches.