Terraferma (2013) - Rotten Tomatoes

Terraferma (2013)

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A man is put in jeopardy when he's forced to help a family with nowhere to turn in this drama from Italian filmmaker Emanuele Crialese. Ernesto (Mimmo Cuticchio) is an elderly fisherman who lives on the Sicilian island of Linosa. The fishing business has gone into a slump and many on the island have either opened businesses catering to tourists or moved elsewhere, though his 20-year-old grandson Filippo (Filippo Pucillo) works with him over the objection of his more pragmatic mother (Donatella Finocchiaro). Political and economic unrest in North Africa has caused a growing number of people to flee the country in hopes of relocating in Europe, and the Sicilian government has firmly warned sailors not to pick up Africans attempting to enter the country illegally by boat. When Ernesto sees a young man (Rubel Tsegay Abraha) and his pregnant mother (Timnit T.) drowning after fleeing a small boat, his conscience forces him to rescue them, and when the woman gives birth not long after they reach shore, the old man and his family become unwitting criminals as they give the immigrant family a place to stay. Terraferma received its North American premiere at the 2011 Toronto International Film Festival. ~ Mark Deming, Rovi

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Critic Reviews for Terraferma

All Critics (20) | Top Critics (9)

Terraferma offers a sun-splashed meditation on compassion, tradition, tolerance, and generational change.

Full Review… | September 13, 2013
Philadelphia Inquirer
Top Critic

For the most part the multi-faceted story works.

Full Review… | September 5, 2013
Washington Post
Top Critic

Crialese and co-screenwriter Vittorio Moroni portray a way of life on that island in complete uproar ..

August 15, 2013
Seattle Times
Top Critic

Involving, thematically rich ... yet also quite timeless ...

Full Review… | August 8, 2013
Los Angeles Times
Top Critic

Emanuele Crialese's film burns with a sense of this situation's inhumanity, and he gives a palpable sense of life in a place where the beauty attracts tourists, but the natives are barely getting by.

Full Review… | July 26, 2013
New York Post
Top Critic

The visceral passion of these tales of poverty-stricken but tight communities, dreaming and striving for better futures for their children, gripped me.

Full Review… | July 25, 2013
NPR
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Terraferma

The film cinematography and locale are lovely to look at! Story could have been better but it manages to keep me engaged so all in all not a bad way to spend some time!

Juli Norwood
Juli Norwood

Funny and touching story that shows the plight of African immigrants trying to reach continental Europe via small fishing and tourist island in southern Italy. A couple of events are softened to keep the movie on the lighter side, but still an overall enlightening and enjoyable movie.

Jesse Garza
Jesse Garza

An involving story centered on the contrast between the traditions and the needs of a new generation in an island, which is reflected in the way the young protagonist has to deal with his problems - and the wonderful cinematography explores quite well the beautiful landscapes.

Carlos Magalhães
Carlos Magalhães

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