Fire at Sea (Fuocoammare) (2016) - Rotten Tomatoes

Fire at Sea (Fuocoammare) (2016)



Critic Consensus: Fire at Sea offers a clear-eyed yet empathetic look at a corner of the world whose terrain may be unfamiliar to many, but whose people's story remains universal.

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Movie Info

Winner of the Golden Bear for Best Film at the Berlin Film Festival 2016, Gianfranco Rosi's incisive, poignant and deeply moving portrait of the Mediterranean island of Lampedusa--and the humanitarian crisis occurring in the seas around it--is both a masterly work of documentary filmmaking and a timely call for urgent action. Situated 150 miles south of Sicily, Lampedusa has hit headlines as the first port of call for hundreds of thousands of African and Middle Eastern refugees hoping to make a new life in Europe. After spending months living on the island and engaging with its inhabitants, Rosi accumulated an incredible array of footage, portraying the history, culture and daily lives of the islanders. Focusing on 12-year-old Samuele, as he explores the land and attempts to gain mastery of the sea, the film slowly builds a breathtakingly naturalistic portrait of the Lampedusan people and the events that surround them. The result is a lyrical, poetic and searingly powerful documentary that casts neither judgement nor aspersions, but simply shows the world to the viewer--to utterly devastating effect.

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Critic Reviews for Fire at Sea (Fuocoammare)

All Critics (76) | Top Critics (16)

Who needs voiceovers when a director's camera has this much to say?

February 3, 2017 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…
San Diego Reader
Top Critic

A fascinating study in contrasts, "Fire at Sea' shows how the normal and painfully abnormal exist side by side - the horrific and the serene, the tragic and the mundane, global crisis and daily humdrum.

January 20, 2017 | Rating: B+ | Full Review…
Detroit News
Top Critic

Though conceived as a humanitarian statement, the movie wouldn't be as memorable or challenging without its quotidian aspect.

December 15, 2016 | Full Review…
Chicago Reader
Top Critic

We feel the bewilderment of the parochial yet decent residents, the helplessness of the well-intentioned yet overwhelmed rescuers, and the anguish and disorientation of the refugees.

December 7, 2016 | Rating: 4/4 | Full Review…
San Francisco Chronicle
Top Critic

What makes the movie worth seeing, is the sequence with the Africans chanting in the detention center about making it from Africa, through the scorching Sudanese desert and Libya, to Lampedusa.

October 28, 2016 | Rating: B- | Full Review…
Christian Science Monitor
Top Critic

Fire at Sea is a shining example of journalism fueled by outrage and shaped by free-ranging curiosity.

October 27, 2016 | Full Review…
Wall Street Journal
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Fire at Sea (Fuocoammare)

A striking look at the European refugee crisis whose fly-on-the-wall directing approach lets it build a revealing portrait of two contrasting realities. Full review on filmotrope. com

Carlos Magalhães
Carlos Magalhães

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