Martin Eden (S)

Martin Eden (S)

Martin Eden (S)

  • Directed by Pietro Marcello
  • Starring Carlo Cecchi, Luca Marinelli, Marco Leonardi, Jessica Cressy, Carmen Pommella and Vincenzo Nemolato
  • ITA | FRA | DEU | 129mins | 2019 | rated (15)

Approx advert and trailer run time: 25 mins

Film runtime: 2h 9m

(S) = Subtitled.

An ambitious, audacious and thrilling adaptation of the 1909 Jack London novel which encapsulates between-the-wars uncertainty.

Pietro Marcello’s sumptuous and powerful new version transports Martin Eden from turn-of-the-century Oakland, California to Naples in the 1920s.

After saving Arturo - a young scion of the industrial middle class - from a beating, the sailor Martin Eden (Luca Marinelli) is invited to the boy's family home. Here he meets Elena (Jessica Cressy), Arturo's beautiful sister, and falls in love with her at first sight. The cultured and refined young woman becomes not only the object of Martin's affections but also a symbol of the social status he aspires to achieve. At the cost of enormous efforts and overcoming the obstacles represented by his humble origin, Martin pursues the dream of becoming a writer.

It's a sweep of cinematic history earned by the film's aspirations. No film could replicate the tragic weight of  London's work, but this comes awfully close.