Le flame del paradis

The Flames of Paradise

Country: Italy
Year: 2006
Duration: 95'

The film tells the true story of a poor peasant woman in the 1600s who lived in an isolated cave in the Val di Non. Accused of witchcraft by the townspeople, the woman is taken to Palazzo Nero, where under torture she admits her guilt and implicates her accusers in revenge for their wickedness. Condemned to death, she refuses to repent, and for this reason is burnt at the stake in the town’s square.“In my films I always prefer to dive into the reality of the times which I’m portraying. This time, I based the film on chronicles of the era (the early 1600s) and, more precisely, on the trial of a poor peasant woman, which ended with her being condemned to be burnt alive at the stake. I’m not attracted to grisly punishments like the burning of a presumed witch. What interested me was the world of the townspeople, revealed in the testimony for the prosecution. This testimony let me construct the story of the film and of the main characters, against the backdrop of the unchangeable nature of the Val di Non.” (L. Emmer)


film director

Luciano Emmer

Luciano Emmer (Milan, Italy, 1918) moved to Rome in 1938 and, with his friend  Enrico Gras, made many documentaries about famous artists of the past. After being exiled in Switzerland, in 1950 he debuted in narrative cinema with Sunday in August, the first of a long series of portraits of Italian lower-middle-class society, which he wrote with  Sergio Amidei. During the 1960s and ‘70s, he shot clips for Carosello, reports and television series, and in 1990 returned to cinema with Basta! Ci faccio un film. He then made two full-length fiction films, A Long Long Long Night of Love (2001) and The Water... the Fire (2003), both selected in Venice. In 2004 the Torino Film Festival dedicated a complete retrospective to his opus.


Domenica d’agosto (Sunday in August, 1950), Parigi è sempre Parigi (Paris Is Always Paris, 1951), Le ragazze di piazza di Spagna (Girls of the Spanish Steps, 1952), Terza liceo (High School, 1954), Camilla (1954), Il bigamo (The Bigamist, 1955), Il momento più bello (The Most Beautiful Moment, 1957), La ragazza in vetrina (Girl in the Window, 1961), Basta! Ci faccio un film (1990), Una lunga, lunga, lunga notte d’amore (A Long Long Long Night of Love, 2001), L’acqua…il fuoco (The Water... the Fire, 2003), Le fiamme del paradiso (2006), Trilogia: il pensiero, lo sguardo, la parola (mm, 2008).