A Chiara

Jonas Carpignano

Chiara’s world is like that of any teenager: a loving family, a healthy rivalry with her older sister. But at her sister's 18th birthday, a car explodes and their happy world turns sideways. Chiara witnesses as her father flees with her cousins. And yet her mother behaves like nothing ever happened the next day. The 15-year old becomes mistrusting and begins to look for her father by herself. She not only finds a secret door in her living room, but also unearths connections to the underworld and the Calabrian mafia. When she is put into a foster family to keep her own family safe, Chiara must decide what kind of future she wants for herself.

A Chiara is about the emancipation of a young woman unexpectedly faced with the ruthless world of adults. The constellation of actors is special: the amateur actors around Swarmy Rotolo in the title role are a family in real life, not just on screen.

More information Lichter FilmfestLichter Filmfest

Direction Jonas Carpignano
Country Italien / Frankreich
Year 2022
Duration 120 min
Language Original with English Subtitles


Zürich Film Festival - Winner Best Feature film

Presented by:

About the director

Jonas Carpignano is an Italian-American filmmaker. After his short films A Chjana and A Ciambra he celebrated his first feature film Mediterranea at Cannes Film Festival 2015. His second feature film, A Ciambra, executive produced by Martin Scorsese, also premiered at Cannes and was submitted by Italy for the Best Foreign Film at the Oscars. A Chiara closes Carpignano’s trilogy about life in Calabria. In addition to the world premiere at Cannes Film Festival 2021, the film has already won numerous awards, among them at Cannes and the Zürich Film Festival.

Press Reviews

The Hollywood Reporter: “Arguably his most accomplished and affecting Film to date”

Variety“Tim Curtin’s dynamic camera is attuned to Chiara’s teenage energy without going overboard, playing on a liminal balance between security and imbalance.”

Europa Cinemas Label jury upon winning Best European Film in the Directors' Fortnight section at the 2021 Cannes Film Festival:

“This story of the gradual empowerment of the young female character and her relationship with her father and her extended family is brilliantly structured and built. The casting of non-professionals in all of the roles works extremely well, and the imaginative sound design makes a big contribution to the appeal of the film.”



Germany premiere

International feature film program