If Only I Were That Warrior is a feature documentary film focusing on the Italian occupation of Ethiopia in 1935. Following the recent construction of a monument dedicated to Fascist general Rodolfo Graziani, the film addresses the unpunished war crimes he and others committed in the name of Mussolini’s imperial ambitions. The stories of three characters, filmed in present day Ethiopia, Italy and the United States, take the audience on a journey through the living memories and the tangible remains of the Italian occupation of Ethiopia — a journey that crosses generations and continents to today, where this often overlooked legacy still ties the fates of two nations and their people.
Italian Golden Globes 2016 / Winner, Best Documentary Festival dei Popoli / Winner, Best Italian Feature Doc New Italian Cinema Events / Special Mention Big Sky Documentary Film Festival / Official Selection African Diaspora International Film Festival / Official Selection Addis International Film Festival / Official Selectio Africa World Film Festival / Official Selection Italian Film Festival of Minneapolis-St. Paul / Official Selection
About the filmmaker
Originally from Rome, Valerio moved to New York City in 2011 to attend documentary classes at New York Film Academy. In 2013, he co-founded Awen Films, a production company specializing in independent documentaries and nonfiction video content including editorial, breaking news and live event coverage. Under the umbrella of Awen Films he directed short and feature documentaries which have been screened at film festivals worldwide, broadcast on TV, and distributed widely in the educational market. His first feature, “If Only I Were That Warrior” (72', 2015) was awarded the 'Imperdibili' prize at the 56th Festival dei Popoli and won the 2016 Italian Golden Globe. “Mister Wonderland” (53', 2019) aired on both Italian (Rai) and American (CPTV, PBS) public television. "Stonebreakers," his latest feature, is set to premiere in fall 2022.