Against the backdrop of a barren landscape, coal-miners advance towards the many mines that dot Sicily's inner land. Crowding into a lift they disappear 500 meters under the surface of the earth. Their descent to hell is accompanied by the metallic rattle of the suspension gear and the sound of their singing. Once they reach the galleries, they are swallowed up by the darkness. In the dim light cast by the mine lamps, their bodies later emerge, drenched in sweat and blackened by dust. Above the daytime, the world is idyllic. The sun shines brightly; the sound of crickets fills the air. This powerful contrast underscores De Seta's editing. While the people above work at their own pace, the men below toil to the rhythm of machines. In this way, SURFARARA conjures a lasting image of the hardship that miners undergo every day.
Visions du Réel Nyon 2006