Karavansara

East of Constantinople, West of Shanghai


Leave a comment

A boy and his shark

MV5BNGU4ZWQ0YWMtMjI2My00YmJmLWFjNDAtM2U1NThlYTAyMzkzXkEyXkFqcGdeQXVyODcwODg0OQ@@._V1_SY1000_CR0,0,388,1000_AL_It was because of my friend Lucy, that is growing restless while we wait for The Meg to hit the screens.
She did a post on an online magazine about shark movies, and she mentioned something that crawled back from my memory like a celluloid ghost – Ti-Koyo e il suo pescecane, a 1962 movie by Folco Quilici, known in the English-speaking world as Tiko and the Shark.
I had very vague recollections of the film, that I saw sometimes in the early ‘70s, when I was 7 or 8 years old.

I checked out Wikipedia for more info about the movie, and found a snippet of the original review, published in 1962 by La Stampa, the daily newspaper of the city where I grew up.

With its fairytale background, the film often has an intoxicating airiness, a pungent kindness; but it could and should become saturated with only the friendship with the shark, as a symbol of an escape from time. Instead, it gives the protagonist the second company of a beautiful little Chinese woman, who for love of the beautiful boy embraces the wild life. This is a coup out of Tarzan; Quilici charged too much the spectacular side of his film proposing a consortium man – woman – shark, really utopian for those who know the true female character. Just like he abused monologues.

The bit about the true female character and its connoisseurs, plus the snub aimed at Tarzan, convinced me that I needed to rewatch the movie, and write a post about it. Continue reading

Advertisements


Leave a comment

Folco Quilici, 1930-2018

I am deeply saddened by the news of the death of journalist, adventurer and film-maker Folco Quilici.

QFA-F-001678-0000

His documentary Sesto Continente (Sixth Continent), that he shot in 1954, at the age of 24, was the first underwater documentary shot entirely in color, and a staple of my early school days, back in the mid-70s. And I remember seeing Fratello Mare (Brother Sea) in the parish cinema, in what I think was 1977 or ‘78 – the movie had come out in ‘75. Continue reading


Leave a comment

Ancient Masters – Peter Kolosimo

KOLOSIMOMy generation was primed for adventure by Thor Heyerdahl and Folco Quilici, for space exploration by Carl Sagan and yes, for mystery and deep time by Peter Kolosimo.
We were the lucky ones.

So I thought I’ll do a series of posts on these maitres a’ penser of our own.
Books fitting in a pulp hero’s library.

And I’ll start with Peter Kolosimo.
I miss Peter Kolosimo. Continue reading


2 Comments

Hunting sunken treasures

The first comment I got when I shouted “Wow! This is just great!” was along the lines of “Sounds like the sort of junk Clive Cussler writes.”
Talk about feeling alienated.
But let’s proceed with order.

1111bigOne of the few perks of living smack in the middle of Southern Piedmont is, in two hours I can be on the Cote d’Azure.
The sun, the sea, acres and acres of nubile, scantly clad young women stretching on the beaches…
And I normally end up in some antiquarian bookstore.
They even publish (or used to) a map of antiquarian bookshops in the Nice area.

So a few years back I was browsing the stalls of one such small Alladin caves of librarian wonder, and I caught me the three volumes of the Born Free series, first edition, and to round up the bill, I threw in a weird little book called Treasure Diving Holidays, by Jane and Barney Crile.
The book – a 1954 first edition – once bought and brought home, was placed on a high shelf together with other sea-oriented books, and soon forgotten.
Which is all right – I’m quite convinced books should be read at the right moment, so sometimes forgetting them on a high shelf is just what’s needed.
Then, when the time comes… I need some color and information for some seafaring stories I’m planning, and I go and rediscover this hidden gem.

What’s it all about? Continue reading