(NOT ALWAYS) MERCI BEAUCOUP
2000 / 8’50”
- by Elisabetta Sgarbi e Paolo Mosca
- editing by Luciano Marenzoni
- mix by Luciano Marenzoni
This documentary-clip is dedicated to Nicola Arigliano, the crooner from Squinzano, near Lecce, who became a performer of the highest rank thanks both to his voice that gained him the name of "the Italian Frank Sinatra", and also to an extraordinary and unique facial mimic, very well-known in the advertising of that period (during the seventies, Arigliano's commercial of Antonetto digestive liqueur was the most popular in the Italian television broadcasting).
Arigliano's face is actually the chief character of the short movie. Just like as if beating up the swing of merci beaucoup (the track by Gorni Kramer from which this work takes its name), Arigliano's gestures, tics and his glances awkwardly magnetic, (dis)assemble each others as they were parts of a Cubist painting.
Filmed during a live concert (featuring Franco Cerri and Dario Lapenna on guitar, Elio Tatti on contrabass and Giampaolo Ascolese on drums), merci beaucoup intermingles moments in synch and out-of synch, from where the "not always" comes, which is not merely a "not always you can say thank you".
So, while the ceiling is threatening both audience and musicians (recalling the same bewilderment of the impending ceilings in Welles's Otello), the camera floats among the characters, it's literally shaken by Cerri's solo, quickly lingers over Giampaolo Ascolese's drums to be again and inevitably attracted by the magnetic charm of Arigliano.
Can't help but scream, as he does, "go man!"
Fano Film Festival 2001
Winner of Premio Rock Targato Italia 2001 for innovating videoclip direction