NOTE: Although it was claimed that some scenes were staged, Mr. Jacopetti admitted to only one re-enactment: a scene in “Mondo Cane 2” based on the self-immolation of a Vietnamese monk, seen everywhere in an Associated Press photo (NY Times).
Mondo cane (A Dog’s World, 1962) is a documentary written and directed by Italian filmmakers Paolo Cavara, Franco Prosperi andGualtiero Jacopetti. The film consists of a series of travelogue vignettes that provide glimpses into cultural practices around the world with the intention to shock or surprise Western film audiences. These scenes are presented with little continuity, as they are intended as a kaleidoscopic display of shocking content rather than presenting a structured argument. Despite its claims of genuine documentation, certain scenes in the film are either staged or creatively manipulated to enhance this effect.
Mondo cane was an international box-office success and inspired the production of numerous, similar exploitation documentaries, many of which also include the word “Mondo” in their title. These films collectively came to be recognized as a distinct genre known asmondo films.
The main film. Description above.
Continuation of the main film.
Africa Addio is a 1966 Italian documentary about the end of the colonial era in Africa. The film was released in a shorter format under the names Africa Blood and Guts in the United States and Farewell Africa on UK VHS. The film was shot over a period of three years by Gualtiero Jacopetti and Franco Prosperi, two Italian filmmakers who had gained fame (along with co-director Paolo Cavara) as the directors of Mondo Cane in 1962. This film ensured the viability of the so-called Mondo film genre, a cycle of “shockumentaries”- documentaries featuring sensational topics, a description which largely characterizes Africa Addio.
The film is based on true events in which the filmmakers explore antebellum America, using period documents to examine in graphic detail the racist ideology and degrading conditions faced by Africans under slavery. Because of the use of published documents and materials from the public record, the film labels itself a documentary, though all footage is re-staged using actors. Though the film is presented as a documentary, it is more of a historical drama or docudrama because of its fantasy framing device of the directors travelling back in time combined with the re-staging of historical events.
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