- 1 hr 36 min
Mediterraneo is a 1991 Italian film directed by Gabriele Salvatores. The film tells the story of a group of Italian soldiers who are sent to an island in the Aegean Sea during World War II to establish a military garrison. The group of soldiers are led by Lieutenant Raffaele Montini (Diego Abatantuono), a reserved and serious officer, and include a number of eclectic characters, each with their own quirks and personalities.
The soldiers are tasked with guarding the island, but they quickly become enamoured with the island and its inhabitants. They develop relationships and friendships with the locals, and soon they find themselves immersed in the simplistic island life, which stands in stark contrast to the brutal and chaotic war waging throughout the rest of the world.
As their time on the island passes, the soldiers' true natures and personalities begin to emerge, leading to conflicts and tensions within the group. While some, like the religious soldier Libero (Giuseppe Cederna), develop relationships with the locals based on respect and mutual understanding, others, like the womanizing Bordin (Claudio Bigagli), are more interested in using their time on the island for casual sex with the local women.
As the war continues to rage on, the soldiers' relationship with the island and its inhabitants deepens, and the Italian soldiers begin to question the necessity of the war and the blind obedience they have been indoctrinated with. Meanwhile, the island is under threat of invasion, and the soldiers must decide whether to fight for their country or to protect the island and the homes they have come to love.
Mediterraneo is a poignant and often humorous exploration of the intersection between war and peace, duty and personal desire, and the bonds of camaraderie and friendship that can form between unlikely allies. The film showcases the beauty and vibrancy of Aegean island culture, and the richness of human connections formed through a shared understanding and a common humanity.
Overall, Mediterraneo is a heartwarming, thought-provoking, and beautifully crafted film that explores the complexities of war and humanity, and the importance of finding common ground across cultural and national divides.