(Taking the floor)

In a small town in the middle of Italy, a group of women coming from Tunisia, Pakistan, Sudan and other far away countries get together in three rooms trying to learn and improve their new language. In the chaotic course of these Italian classes, in between linguistic misunderstandings and other distractions, the students leave behind their everyday roles to finally focus on themselves, letting grammar rules and historical facts mix with personal stories and feelings that are trying to find a voice. When these three rooms are full, they become a space for exchange and confrontation between women that apparently have nothing in common with each other, except the will to understand and be understood.



47’, HD, color, dolby

directed and edited by Perla Sardella
first camera Perla Sardella / second camera Sabrina Melis
produced by Berenice Film / Marco Longo / Fulvio Lombardi
audio mixing Tommaso Barbaro & Agit Utlu (Fullcode)
color correction Simone Mazzoleni



17/11/2019    WORLD PREMIERE @ FILMMAKER FESTIVAL (Prospettive) - Cinema                                      Arcobaleno Milano, Italy 

11/09/2020  @ Sciacca Film Fest - Documentary Competition - Arena Giardino Sciacca,                         Italy

2020/2021   Screenings at the Italian Embassy of Culture around the world: 
                        “Italiana. 7 sguardi sul cinema italiano: Diritti Umani”



First prize - PROSPETTIVE Section - FILMMAKER FESTIVAL 2019, Milan


Taking the word (translated literally from french expression ‘prendre la parole’, in english ‘taking the floor’), however, is not just a matter of being allowed to express yourself, and it is much more than the freedom of speech. Taking the word means transforming words themselves, giving them new meanings, those that are bound to new social logics of action and behaviour. Taking the word also means getting out of yourself, escaping from solitude, encountering others, and constructing community. In both of these senses taking the word is a process of translation. 

from Assembly by Michael Hardt and Antonio Negri

Prendere la parola (Taking the floor) is about a translating process: learning to talk a new tongue is to navigate a new language, transforming what we say and how we say it and being in contact with other people. In this attempt to adapt, to move towards others, is the focus of the film: I choose not to polish a process that is, by its nature, chaotic and problematic, but to show it in its frustrations and dispersions. We take a sit inside the three rooms e we listen, we are on the same floor as the pupils and teachers, while, one after the other, with the pretext of the language, they offer us something about their views. Watching closely, we begin to understand that the two classical roles, pupils and teachers, are not sufficient for understanding the interactions: underlying definitions loose their value. A community is created, one of women meeting in a space in which they feel that the liberation of one of them is connected to the liberation of the others.