Monday, June 27, 2005

An Italian Tarzan

From the Moomins' book shelves I also found out that there was an Italian copy of Tarzan. Moomintroll had a book called Saranga, viidakon poika/Saranga, Son of the Jungle, by one Attilio Gatti, who was an Italian author. It's been translated into English as Saranga, the Pygmy which is actual translation of the original title (Saranga, il pigmeo). From Gatti there are also other books translated, such as Kamanda: An African Boy. A quick search reveals that Gatti was an expeditioner and traveller. He made also a film called Siliva the Zulu, of which the website says this:

“In the annals of African cinema, SILIVA THE ZULU is a landmark. In 1927, Italian director and explorer Attilio Gatti traveled to Zululand, where he devised a script filled with ‘love, hate, intrigue and adventure.’ Gatti took the standard Western romantic theme of ‘boy meets girl, boy loses girl,’ etc. and stirred it together with ideas of ‘the tribal.’ He added a generous dose of witchcraft, and the result is a heady melodramatic stew. But he chose to shoot in a rural community, and, as a result, SILIVA stands virtually alone as an authentic record of Zulu life and culture at that time. Melodramatic as the film is — and melodrama was, after all, the soul of silent cinema — Gatti is never condescending or demeaning towards his actors. They are fully the equals of their counterparts in white cinema.” (Peter Davis)

I found only cover of Saranga and it's not very good. Try to bear with it. (Bare with it? How does one say?)

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