Viaggio segreto is the story of a “reconstruction”, the reconstruction of a criminal, tragic event and, parallel to this, the reconstruction of a life.
To act in this reconstruction is Leo, a psychoanalyst in his forties who, to protect a secret, must face a difficult journey to Sicily.
This is a journey of return, since twenty-five years before, he had fled from there with his younger sister Ale. This journey becomes the possible, lucid reconstruction of the crime that suddenly suspended their childhood, the story of their family. The occasion for this journey comes unexpectedly. Leo’s beautiful sister, Ale, meets Harold (Emir Kusturica), an important fifty-year-old Serbian artist, and the man wants to marry Ale. This event is important, traumatic. Between brother and sister there is such a bond, such intimacy, that the fear of such a possibility had never even occurred to them before. In addition, Harold, as a wedding present, has decided to offer the fragile young woman her ancestral home, the one in Sicily, the one from which the two siblings had fled, where “everything” had occurred.
An occasional figure to mediate in this is Anna, a thirty-year-old Sicilian woman who lives alone with her little girl. Even Leo is not supposed to know about the sale, but someone from his “buried” past lets him know about the imminent transaction. Leo, who does not drive nor like to fly, is forced to go to Sicily, that place of such incredible nature, death, relentless vitality, civil horror. Little by little, painful memory resurfaces in the very same places where the event occurred. A terrible tragedy: the death of their mother who, according to the facts, died murdered by his father. A murder committed in this big country house near Syracuse, the same house that Harold, unknown to Ale, now wants to buy. An impossible transaction that Leo, without touching the delicate equilibriums, must prevent.
Thus Leo is forced to put the puzzle of the family story back together again, that event from which he had to seek refuge. For him, healing from this curse, like a spell, is now finally possible, as he regains possession of that mysterious, beautiful and terrible place, that is, life itself. As all journeys then, here is a journey that leaves behind the ruins of the past, and the mystery that has sealed it, one that leads to an unknown land where a new, unexplored meaning of life is finally possible.
A journey from the wound, from that painful narrow passage, from the gash that irreversibly marked a destiny, and that leads to that special light of reason and feeling that is born out of reconstruction and memory. Of course, this journey is also a journey through today’s Italy, Sicily being perhaps its most contradictory theatre. The feeling of rebirth that pervades its atmospheres is due to the suspended tormented climate of our land, as well as to the irrepressible desire to rebuild and reconstruct. br />
Freely adapted from the book by Josephine Hart.