Four Elements: what is life without earth, water, fire and air? There is no life without it and if there’s life, it’s no a simple one.

When we watch a film telling a story without one of this elements, we usually witness to a story about struggle and survival. Drama, sci-fi fiction, horror and animation are the genres chosen for this month issue, each of them linked to one if not more of the four elements.

AFTER THE STORM, Hirokazu Kore-eda, 2016

“After The Storm”, from award winning Japanese film director Hirokazu Kore-eda, is a tender and bittersweet story about of a divorced gambler once a writer and now a private detective, named Ryota who can’t really afford to pay child support and doesn’t really have a relationship with his little child. As a typhoon approaches, he uses the storm as a way of trapping his ex-wife and son in his mother’s house as he wants to re-establish for a night his marriage and be the kind of family man he knows he could never be.

THE RED TURTLE, Michael Dudok de Wit, 2016

A co-production between Wild Bunch and Studio Ghibli, “The Red Turtle” is co-written and directed by dutch animator Michaël Dudok de Wit. This fantasy animated masterpiece without dialogue, its only sounds are the sounds of nature and a score composed by Laurent Perez Del Mar, tells the story of a nameless man that wakes up on a desert island after being set adrift by a storm. A giant red turtle will change the course of his life. As an animated film the fluid animations and the exquisite use of line and color, clearly influenced by the founders of Studio Gibli
Hayao Miyazaki and Isao Takahata, are a joy for the eyes and the heart.
The Red Turtle” is nothing more than a story about life and the relationship between man and nature, with a little touch of magic.

MOON, Duncan Jones, 2009

“Moon” is the directorial debut of Duncan Jones, the son of David Bowie. In the future, after an oil crisis, an alternative fuel (helium-3) is being extracted from lunar soil. A facility called Sarang Station was built on the far side of the moon to extract the fuel. The facility is automated and it requires only a single man to overseen the work and launch canister bound with the extracted helium-3 to Earth. Sam Bell (Sam Rockwell) has a three-year work contract, and two weeks before his return to Earth he begins to suffer from hallucinations. Moon” is a film about human loneliness, in a place where things we take for granted to live a normal life are nowhere to be found.

CARRIE, Brian De Palma, 1976

“Carrie”, directed by Brian De Palma and adapted from the Stephen King novel of the same title, is a 1976 supernatural horror film about the fire that teenage angst set free. Carrie White (Sissy Spacek) is a bullied shy unpopular sixteen years girl that discovers to have telekinetic powers, and soon begin to uses them to revenge when her classmates pranks her. A tense relationship with her overprotective mother is also a very important focal point in the story. For a 1976 film, the work of director De Palma is very modern and has stood the taste of time with its great camera work, acting and special effects. You don’t want to miss the biggest fire and blood collision ever witnessed on the screen at the end of the film. A remake of “Carrie” was made in 2016 starring Chloë Grace Moret as Carrie and Julianne Moore as her mother, but there was not point in making it as the original is still as glorious as it was 43 years ago.

A selection made by Nicola Casadei Della Chiesa