A peaceful Italian island is at the epicentre of the European migrant crisis and keeps receiving refugees in the thousands every year, who suffer through unspeakable horrors to get there – completely in contrast with the lives of the locals.
This Italian documentary delves deep into the European migrant crisis and Lampedusa, a sleepy island of the Pelagie Islands in the Mediterranean Sea, finds itself at the epicentre. Due to its proximity to the European continent, it is the most desirable landing point for African and North African refugees fleeing from wars, unrest, and starvation on that continent.
While the Italian natives of the island lead peaceful, comfortable lives that are highlighted by a compassionate doctor who treats the refugees, and a young boy who is the doctor's neighbour and whiles away his time making slingshots using medical rubber bands and takes them to a local field to shoot with his pals. Soon there are shots of choppers and a boat. The latest batch of migrants is here.
'They’re drenched in diesel,' one coastal patrol worker says, examining a few people who have come off a boat. 'If I flicked a cigarette lighter in here the whole room would go up.' The underfed migrants, who mostly look down at their feet as they meet the people into whose hands they’ve placed their fates, grow voluble after a while. In a holding cell, one of them speak-sings of his journey here, from Nigeria. 'We drank our piss to survive,' he wails, both proud and miserable. The doctor continues treating these folks, one by one. The young boy, Samuele, is diagnosed with lazy eye and wanders around with an eye-patch. The sea is always there, ready to deliver new shipments of humanity.
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