Private Project

Moral Bombing. The weapon of grief (English Subtitles)

"Moral Bombing" (moral bombardment) was the term used during the Second World War to describe bombing aimed at civilian populations centers. This diabolical weapon was designed to upset the existence of entire populations, sowing death and destruction. The bombs were used to instill terror and the target was no longer represented by enemy soldiers but by people, by the civilian population. Ezio Costanzo's documentary-film highlights the cruelty of this strategy and highlights the physical and psychological tragedies experienced by the population, in particular by children, unaware victims of the terror that rained from the sky. The documentary also commemorates the Nazi massacre of twelve civilians killed in cold blood by retreating German soldiers (the first German massacre in Italian territory) at Castiglione di Sicilia on August 12, 1943. The documentary also deals with the issue of the consequences of war and the impact that the bombings left on the bodies and in the minds of many innocent children. Using the narration of the docufilm, with reconstruction of scenes and historical repertory images Ezio Costanzo tells the dramatic and tragic story of a child-protagonist whose younger brother is killed during the war while playing a tragic game of “keep away”. As the docu-film develops, the story of the young boy emerges through his memories of the war. He was only nine years old and living in the Sicilian countryside where he had taken refuge with his family to escape the bombing of his hometown when, he picked up a strange metal object accidentally left behind by a group of American soldiers. It was while playing a game of “keep away” with his little female cousin and his baby brother that they inadvertently began a game with death. He began throwing the strange object to his little cousin when his baby brother joined in the game that an explosion tears through the air. "Years later - says the child-protagonist - I forgot the war, the bombings, the death, the rubble. What I cannot forget is the evil that the wicked choices of adults have done to us children. No, I will never forget this ". 

  • Ezio Costanzo
  • Ezio Costanzo
  • ANVCG ONLUS Associazione Nazionale Vittime Civili di Guerra
  • Riccardo Maria Tarci
    Key Cast
    "Actor and narrating voice"
  • Edoardo Carcassi
    Key Cast
  • Matilde Marino
    Key Cast
  • Emanuele Marino
    Key Cast
  • Giorgio Marino
    Key Cast
    "Director of photography"
  • Tahnee Drago
    Key Cast
  • Salvo Coppola
    Key Cast
    "Original Music"
  • Project Type:
  • Runtime:
    44 minutes 20 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    April 9, 2019
  • Country of Origin:
  • Country of Filming:
  • Language:
  • Shooting Format:
  • Film Color:
    Black & White and Color
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
Director Biography - Ezio Costanzo

Ezio Costanzo, a professional journalist, historian and documentary filmmaker, is the author of several books on the Anglo-American occupation of Sicily in 1943 and creator and curator of international photographic exhibitions on the themes of the Second World War and the history of photography. 
The exhibitions include "Phil Stern. Sicily 1943" dedicated to the great American photographer, and "Children and War", which deals with the dramas of childhood on the various fronts of the Second World War. He was part of the scientific committee for the creation of the Historical Museum of the Landing in Sicily 1943 of Catania with the assignment of researcher of the photographic and film material located in the most important archives of the world. He also worked as the author and director of the historical videos which are displayed at the museum . He has published several historical essays including: "La Guerra in Sicilia. 1943, Photographic History"; "Sicily 1943 - Brief History of the Allied Landing"; "Mafia & Allies - American Secret Services and Landing in Sicily", winner of the "Rocco Chinnici" award in 2007, and later translated and published in the United States; "Instant and History. Reportage and photographic documentation. From the origins to the Magnum". He also wrote and directed the documentary films "Phil Stern, the War and the Soul" and "Sicily 1943. The Allied landings". He is the Italian delegate to the "Phil Stern Trust" in Los Angeles for the care and preservation of Phil Stern's World War II photo archive and for promoting events concerning the great American photographer. He also collaborates with Rai Storia and has participated in the making of "Storia proibita delle guerre Italiane (History Channel), "Correva l'anno" (Rai Tre), "The beginning of the end. The battle of Sicily" (Rai Storia Dixit), "Sicily ’43" by Folco Quilici (Istituto Luce). Mr. Costanzo also currently teaches "History of reportage and photographic documentation" and "Fotoreportage" at the Catania Academy of Fine Arts. He also writes for the cultural page of La Repubblica (Palermo edition) and collaborates with many historical magazines. 

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Director Statement

“The repertory of historical images not only describe the war but also the disasters it brings with it. The Second World War created millions of civilian victims around the world. Even today, the unexploded devices found in the countryside cause mutilation and death. The testimonies of these civilian victims allow us to understand the real extent of this terrible tragedy and make us aware of the physical and psychological dramas experienced by these people and in particular by the children- unconscious victims of the terror that fell from the sky.”