Catania's Santi Pulvirenti nominated for a David for the soundtrack of L'ultima notte di Amore


By John

It's a nomination for the David di Donatello which has its roots in many different, yet similar, musical worlds by the Catanase composer Santi Pulvirenti for the soundtrack of the film L'ultima notte di Amore by Andrea Di Stefano, published by CAM/Sugar. Orchestra but also analogue tone as in the best rock tradition. Music, then, as a character in itself that enters the plot of the film.

«I started working on the soundtrack starting from the screenplay – explained Pulvirenti – as I often do to “write” my personal film in my head. I start imagining the characters when they are not yet defined and then I give them a face. We have a very profound exchange with Andrea and the chats before and during writing are fundamental to understanding how music can become an actor together with others.”

That of Pulvirenti, born son of the Catania of the Seventies and musical of the Nineties, is music steeped in Italian cinematography that has made history, as well as the notes of composers who defined cinema with their soundtracks. The crime drama on the one hand and Morricone on the other, passing through the punk rock of Fugazi, those who «after one of their concerts in Catania had decided to finance local independent music».

«The music is a script parallel to the official one – Pulvirenti said again – and in mine I wink at a cinematic world of the past as well as that of the future. Inside there is also my pre-cinema musical approach, when I played with a band, I closed my eyes and physically looked for other people's music to compare myself with.”

Much of all this also accompanies the protagonist of L'ultima notte di Amore, played by Pierfrancesco Favino, within a temporal space of a single night, long and definitive in its events. Dark and very fast. «The entire initial sequence of the film – Pulvirenti further explained – was shot in a helicopter while Andrea (Di Stefano, the director) listened to the music and indicated to the pilot where to go, depending on what the music suggested to him, to shoot time. It was a wonderful combination that allowed us to play with many elements, as in the case of panting or whistling. The mood of the film entered the music.”

«In terms of inspiration – continued Pulvirenti, who in the world of pop-rock has also collaborated with Carmen Consoli, Franco Battiato and many others – the reworked detective films of the Seventies played an important role, but also Morricone and others. Mine is a declaration of love towards a wonderful Italian historical period, without taking anything away from the period of great creativity we are experiencing today. I also wanted to play with unconventional sounds for a film noir. The idea was to make a soundtrack that had its own stage presence, sometimes it is also necessarily very strong.”
For some years now, it has been his great passion for cinema that has shifted Santi Pulvirenti's attention from discography to feature film soundtracks, passing through both documentaries and TV series. «There are many analogies with the world of rock – the composer further explained – left over from my recording past, from my studies, but also from the approach to music I had some time ago while playing in a band.