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Florence: Days of Destruction – The flood in Florence in Franco Zeffirelli’s film

Per Firenze

District: Tuscany
Province: Florence (FI)
Date: 2016-11-04

Florence: Days of Destruction - The flood in Florence in Franco Zeffirelli's film

Per Firenze

The flood occurred 50 years ago, in the early hours of Friday, November 4, 1966, following an exceptional wave of bad weather.

It was one of the worst floods occurred in Italy. It caused severe damage in particular in Florence, but also in most of Tuscany and across the country.

The film and the mud angels

Per Firenze

The documentary film "Florence: Days of Destruction" by Franco Zeffirelli was shot just after the tragedy that devastated his city. The texts are by Furio Colombo, the music by Roman Vlad.

It was released on November 23, 1966.

In the first part of the documentary it's showed the situation of the city of Florence during the flood and in the following days. They are shown the incalculable damage but also the immediate reactions of citizens and traders involved.

Subsequently there are some testimonies and it is showed the work of the "Mud angels" So are remembered many people, coming from Florence and from all over the world, who rushed to help the city and the residents to return to normal and recover and protect the numerous works of art.

"These guys will go away as they came, and will not even be possible to thank them. These images are the thanks that we owe them and they are also our hope ".

The request for help to the world

Per Firenze

The film had a very important role in raising awareness both nationally and internationally.

The same Zeffirelli conceived it as a tool to seek help from around the world to save Florence.

For this he tried to involve in the project characters able to amplify the international value.

He took a favorable opportunity. The great actor Richard Burton in those days was in Italy. He was participating together with Zeffirelli and Liz Taylor to the filming of "The Taming of the Shrew". He was engaged in the project and narrated the documentary is good for its part, not dubbed.

"I am Richard Burton. You will forgive my imperfect Italian, but I would try to speak without translation. Because what has happened in Italy and in Florence shook me deeply. [...] Now Florence needs the help of all, because of the city belongs to the world, so it is also my city. "

Liz Taylor was also involved, although its item appears only in the English version made for the United States.

Among the appeals that are launched towards the end of the documentary there is also that of Ted Kennedy.

Per Firenze

He, newly elected senator, he was in those days in Rome. Immediately he went to Florence. In the film appeals to Americans and to the inhabitants of the world to rescue the human capital and artistic center of Florence.

The documentary film "Florence: Days of Destruction", restored by Teche Rai in Turin, is visible on the website of RAI.

Link: "Florence: Days of Destruction" by Franco Zeffirelli


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