Paolo Rossi - The Man. The sample. The Legend, he will not be able to leave you indifferent

Paolo Rossi - The Man. The sample. The Legend, he will not be able to leave you indifferent

Paolo Rossi - The Man. The sample. The Legend

Paolo Rossi - The Man. The sample. The Legend is not a documentary like the others, it cannot be. The one created by Michela Scolari and Gianluca Fellini, with the interviews edited by Federica Cappelletti Rossi, is in fact an intimate and coherent homage, the best that could be done to him, to Pablito, the man who most of all is connected to the greatest sporting joy of this country: the world championship in Spain in 1982. Paolo Rossi is no longer there, he left prematurely on December 9, 2020, but his memory, his deeds, what he meant for every Italian for 40 years now, they return to the big screen from 5 July. They do it on this journey dominated by his voice but not only, he relives in the memories of the many friends, former opponents and protagonists of that ball to which he is inextricably linked.

Remembering together with Pablito Paolo Rossi we loved him, he had everything he needed to be loved, starting from a very poor childhood in Prato, but seasoned by a love for sport that he himself makes us understand here has always been something incredibly present in his family, in the daily life of that 'Italy. It was Italy that met at the stadium or in front of a television because through sport it somehow redeemed itself. Nothing strange, nothing that we do not already know or that we have not experienced over and over again in our history, just think of the victory of the Mancini group's European Championship last year, what it meant for this country torn apart by Covid and from the recession.

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Paolo Rossi talks to us through the camera, he does it with the same smile, the same energy he had when he began to love football as a child, in the Santa Lucia, and then began the process that would have made him dress the shirts for Ambrosiana Prato and then for Cattolica Virtus, and finally for Juventus, where however he was not immediately appreciated.

Through his words, echoes the memory of when he became an object of desire in our Serie A, at the time when he wore the Lanerossi Vicenza shirt, a small paradise of provincial football as there was a time in the boot. But Paolo Rossi - The Man. The sample. The Legend is above all a story of determination, even of suffering, because one always accompanies the other. And here we are, while together we remember the injuries, the perplexities about his physicality defined by many as frail, too much for the football that counted.

And then comes that betting scandal that almost prematurely put an end to his career as one of the most extraordinary footballers that Italy has had, all due to the justicialist climate full of suspicions that already became sentences without clear evidence. But it's not just him who tells us the most important moments in his life. To keep him company there are men like Cabrini, Zoff, Tardelli, Zico, Falcao, Baggio, Platini, Pelé, Boniek, Carraro, Moggi, Maradona, Junior, Rumenigge and many others who shared with him the years when football was still something of purely popular or almost, but no less turbid or morally complicated, between cunning and obscure points.

A boy in the Italy of the Piombo years Paolo Rossi was a striker different from all the others who l 'Italy had had since then. Growing up in the myth of Kurt Hamrin, Swedish striker who became the flag of Fiorentina, for better or worse he took him as a model, he was inspired by his particular way of moving on the pitch. Paolo was very fast, very skilled with both feet, with a burning sprint and a dry dribble. However, he had the best weapon above all in cunning, intelligence, opportunism that literally made him a nightmare for every opposing defender. A reality that are the same former team-mates and rivals to remember, of how much every defender was under the illusion of being able to tame him, only to find himself observing him while he slipped the ball into the net.

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Paolo Rossi - Man. The sample. The Legend, shows us all this using period films, those that have become, for better or worse, a part of our conscience as Italians, with the voice of Nando Martellini to mark the various moments of that world championship in the land of Spain. But this documentary, probably studied for the Anglophone and American public in particular, is also useful for how it paints the tragic and gloomy picture of a country, Italy in the 70s and early 80s, which was besieged by the underworld, the bad politics, from the years of Lead with the murder of Aldo Moro and the attacks. The feeling of almost overwhelming failure persisted beyond a shadow of a doubt. Which ultimately also reminds us that sport has always had the ability to lift morale and bring a nation together, to make us remember why we are what we are.

And no one has been able to do it in such a memorable way as Paolo Rossi in that 1982, perhaps only the "Vecio" Enzo Bearzot, the man who, against everything and everyone, waited for him .

Bearzot took him to Spain in spite of the fact that due to the suspension for the Betting Scandal he had basically just returned, to the point of being even underweight. In this, Bearzot did not hesitate to exacerbate his already uneventful relationship with the press and executives, which was also the fortune of the national team, alone against everyone and strong for this.

The last hero of an endangered football If ever there was an athlete who symbolized the concept of resurrection, no one was more so than Paolo Rossi, whose story for good or bad can only overlap with that of a national team that, against all odds, destroyed every opponent, up to the final one, on that evening of 11 July 1982. If you really find a flaw in the documentary it is perhaps in the duration: an extra half hour perhaps would not have spoiled , but after all, time is never enough for an Italian to remember that summer.

For almost 40 years, even those born after the Mundial have always considered Paolo Rossi something other than a mere idol or hero sporty, for the Italians he was almost a friend of the family, something that belonged to everyone and nobody.

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This certainty persists for the entire duration of this documentary, where we discover it as a revelation in the highly contested Argentina World Cup of Videla and the disappeared, but also become the symbol of football that was changing, a business of billions.

Rossi ended up good or bad in the middle of an auction like never before, with the famous resignation of Franco Carraro against the billions that besieged the ball, conquered it.

Paolo Rossi was also a historical witness for this, his goals, his plays, his victories then with the Old Lady's shirt where he became even more myth, occurred when football became more and more a question between satraps and billions.

The fact that he retired due to some strange twist of fate, when Berlusconi was creating the definitive change, putting an end to a national-popular dream that his goals made him myth is sobering.

Perhaps this is also why Paolo Rossi has always been dear to us, because a visceral, authentic passion for sport moved in him, he appeared disconnected from that universe in turmoil in perennial change, besieged by scandals and trafficking and then increasingly connected to virtual reality.

He was, will forever be, simply a boy, the antidivo of football, who against Brazil, Poland and Germany, gave us some of the strongest collective emotions ever, and for a few hours made us proud of being Italian in spite of everything.

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