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18 July1935
Cruise on the Augustus
Nicolò La Colla
Music by Guglielmo Pagnozzi

The representation of an entire nation dreaming, dancing. This is the first impression aroused by a sequence filmed on 18 July 1935 on the deck of an ocean liner. The sequence is taken from an 8mm film documenting the games and dancing during a after-work cruise. It is a trip promoted by the newspaper 'La Gazzetta del Popolo', a pro-regime newspaper in Turin, where Nicolò La Colla works, a journalist, filmmaker and 'cruiser' together with colleagues and friends. It contributes to the feeling of shared glee to know that the Augustus is the largest motor ship in the world (and will be so until 1936). Its very name says it all: no motor vessel, in fact, possesses a power output of 28,000 horsepower, such as that of the Augustus, achieved with four two-stroke Savoja M.A.N.Diesel engines. Power and speed are the marks of the Italy of the time, and the sailing ship crossed by the Augustus cannot but disfigure like a fallen nobleman. What is she doing there at sea all alone? La Colla seems to ask himself, filming it. He is indeed a man with a camera, the Sicilian La Colla, but at one point we recognise him among the others: he is wearing a coppola and goggles. Who knows to whom he may have lent the camera. The Augustus left Genoa the day before and sails on its way to the Balearic Islands. Sailing the Mediterranean one can dance, there is no danger of encountering an iceberg, there is only music and a happy future ahead of them all.