'The Coat' loosely adapts Aristophanes' 'The Birds' from Athens of 414BC to a few hot days in contemporary Calabria. The film follows two characters, a young man and his daughter, who have arrived from Albania looking for a better life. They are searching for a swimming coach who fled the collapse of Communism in the 1990s, but instead they find an Arbëresh community, descendants of an earlier Albanian exodus in 1450.
Along the way the pair intercept two actors touring the rural south in an attempt to resuscitate the long dead street hero Punchin...ella. The past is unruly though and histories, invoked, fold quickly back in on themselves and diffuse through the Calabrian landscape.
A Canadian relative looking for his 'roots' joins the actors but like the others, naive to the terrain that surrounds them, he only charts a cartography of his own desire. Meanwhile the birds fly overhead taunting everyones imprudence.
'The Coat' was commissioned by the Toronto International Film Festival in 2015. It was written with a cast of actors and non-actors in response to interviews with migrants in Canada and Italy.
Please note this screening takes place in the RBGE Lecture Theatre at 20A Inverleith Row, not at Inverleith House.