UNTER BÄUMEN

ROLAND RIZ life and work
DIRECTED BY Veronika Riz

“I hardly remember our father as a politician, much more our common experiences, trips, weekends, evenings with friends and him as a lively family man”



PRODUCTION Markus Frings Mediaart

WITH

Roland and Verena Riz,

Elisabeth, Katharina, Veronika, Barbara, Isabella, Michaela Riz


DOP Nuno Escudeiro
CAMERA Christian Gasser
EDITING Nela Märki
PRODUCTION MANAGEMENT Norbert Vieider
INTERVIEWS with Roland Riz Adina Guarnieri
MUSIC Stefano Bernardi
SOUND Lorenzo Misia Matilde Ramini Gabriele Borghi
SOUND MIX Martin Niedermair
COLOUR GRADING Marco di Liello


“Can’t you make this film without me? “That’s what my father said to me when I first asked him if I could make this film.
Then I started wondering how to conceive a film without the main character. Could there be another way to make a film about a 95-year-old politician, lawyer and family man?

We are seven sisters, daughters of Roland Riz, historic politician of the SVP, idealist and one of the promoters of the autonomy of South Tyrol. We have never been interested in him as a politician, but in him as our father and mentor. Today we want to look at him differently, to reconstruct the person he was as a historical figure and overall as a human being, with his values and also his contradictions.

I remember that, like my sisters, he worked all week in the Parliament and Senate in Rome and came on weekends to spend most of his time in his office. I remember the long sports days, the stimulating dinners with friends. I don’t remember his complicated fights in the Italian Parliament to create the Autonomy of South Tyrol or his disagreements with other South Tyroleans who wanted reunification with Austria, the independence of the territory and other facts.

This film is a journey of memories of a man, reconstructing his life, reconstructing our life with him, as a memory of his gestures, of his personality. I want to make this film as a legacy of something that could remain of my father when he passes away, so that we don’t forget who he is.

Recently I found his notes that he had written for years for a book that would tell his whole life, four folders full of notes and documents that his secretary had transcribed. It was time to read them to find out how my father wanted to be remembered as a politician through his writings.

Born in 1927, nine years after the unification of the region with Italy, the history of our father and our family is inseparable from the history of South Tyrol, a territory with all its turbulences. Our intention is to look at a place, a language, a political entity, a region that had to understand what and where it was historically and how it should act, from different points of view.

As a university professor, our father always maintained an open dialogue and discussion with future generations, stimulating thoughts based on his ideas and those of his students. In line with what he taught us, this film is our way of reviewing the past and thinking about the future, a story to reflect on, who we are today, where we come from and what future we see for ourselves.

As a choreographer, gestures and bodies are important to me. I worked with my sisters to reconstruct our memories of him, to represent them, the small gestures and movements that we hold in our memory. In parallel, we talked about him and our mother, uncovering the relationships between him and each of us. Who is this man? How will we remember him? What has shaped us in our life together with him? How do we want our father to be remembered?

To speak about a person is always complex. A person is his work, his personality, his dreams and visions. But for us, it is what we carry within us that comes from our Father, qualities he gave us as people, as a family. I want to discover his legacy in our family, what makes up our characters.

produced on behalf of

RAI Südtirol

supported by
Autonome Provinz Bozen
Amt für Film und Medien
Südtiroler Volkspartei
Stiftung Südtiroler Sparkasse

Brauerei Forst AG
Bettina Amonn


Kulturverein TEMA

Mediaart Production Coop c 2023