Pachito, 98 years old, rides a horse every morning, Adolfo, 93 years old, flies a plane. As for Tomi, at the age of 95 he goes on tour in Japan with a pop band of wrinkled and cheerful peers.
Old beautiful, indeed beautiful if you can turn gray like the three protagonists of Kentannos, document film by Victor Cruz visible on the platforms #iorestoinsala and Chili. Fascinated by the fourth age, the Argentine director went in search of the secret of a happy longevity in three blue zones of the planet, where life expectancy is much higher than average: in the Nicoya peninsula in Costa Rica, in Villagrande in the Nuorese area, on the island of Kohama, off the coast of Okinawa.
While I was making another movie in Costa Rica, I met Panchita, 109 years of enviable energy. It was like seeing my grandmother again, I felt a deep and inexplicable joy. The idea of the documentary born there tells Cruz. And if Panchita can count on the support of her 93-year-old son, Pachito instead tries to sneak away from an anxious daughter, who would like to prevent him from riding with the excuse that she is 98 years old. Imagine. With the look of gaucho, puts the hat on his head and there he is in the saddle, proud as a king. Pura vida, Pachito! a neighbor yells after him.
When you meet an old man smart everyone asks him about his diet. Of course, nutrition, movement, are important. But family and social relationships are even more so. Old people need human warmth, to feel considered and important. So for Adolfo, a goat herder in a Sardinian town famous for trees and centuries-old men. For his birthday, everyone around him blows out 93 candles making a secret wish.
And then he beats it on the sly headed to the airfield, determined to take a ride in the sky with a propeller car. Happy in the blue painted blue, heedless of the appeals of the control tower that orders him to return to the ground. From Sardinia I was struck by the hospitality of its people – confesses Cruz -. I was moved by the love they bring to their land, the keeping alive the traditions, the place of respect reserved for the elderly in the community. The greeting of the place, Kentannos, wish for a happy long life, became the title of the film.
May you live a hundred years, or even ten thousand, as they say in Puccini’s Turandot and in the Far East. In the islands around Okinawa, there are no limits. At 95, Tomi lives alone, once she sang in a group, but after the death of her son … But then, like in the Blues Brothers, the old band wants to return to the scene and claims her. Tomi tempted, she puts on her striped kimono, the red band on her forehead. The singing friends celebrate her, hold her hand, with them she goes back to dancing and singing. There is a very stimulating Japanese concept, Ikigai means “the reason to live” – explains the director – All the protagonists of the film know their Ikigai, everyone has a reason to get up in the morning, everyone lives in the present and not in the past. Knowing them has made me a militant of old age, I don’t care about becoming a centenary but to live life as an adventure to the end, without ever stopping dreaming. Nor to sing. Tomi and his band KBG84, 84 as the average age of the old girls, have put aside the ailments. The old queens of pop have conquered Japan on tour and climbed to the heights of YouTube.
April 20, 2021 (change April 20, 2021 | 19:04)
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