Sugar Baby - Berardo Carboni - Italy
Sugar Baby (Italy, 2018) by Eurochannel
Sugar Baby (Youtopia, 2018)
Director: Berardo Carboni
In the haunting world, where reality and the virtual converge, a profound narrative unfolds that explores the desperate choices of an eighteen-year-old amidst economic strife and the allure of an online escape… Eurochannel premieres Sugar Baby.
Sugar Baby unfolds as a compelling cinematic narrative, offering a poignant exploration of the intricacies surrounding the life of Matilde, an eighteen-year-old grappling with economic hardship, familial responsibilities, and unconventional choices. The film seamlessly blends neorealism with machinima, drama with fantasy, and despair with hope, providing audiences with a thought-provoking tale that challenges societal norms.
Matilde serves as a poignant symbol of the struggles faced by many young individuals in today's society. Her character navigates the challenges of an alcoholic mother and the imminent loss of their family home. Despite graduating six months ago, Matilde finds herself unable to secure employment, prompting her to seek refuge in the virtual world of the multiplayer online role-playing game "Landing."
In this fantastical online realm, Matilde's avatar becomes a sanctuary, allowing her to momentarily escape the harsh realities of her life. However, as financial woes intensify, Matilde turns to unconventional means to make ends meet—engaging in videochat stripping shows, each click a step towards economic survival.
Enter Ernesto, a wealthy bourgeois leading a double life. By day, he operates a respectable pharmacy; by night, he indulges in forbidden desires with young prostitutes, revealing a parallel world of seduction, submission, and vice. The convergence of Matilde's struggles with Ernesto's clandestine pursuits sets the stage for an unexpected turn of events.
The plot takes a dramatic twist when Matilde's mother, Laura, is compelled to disclose their dire financial situation. In a bid to alleviate the family's plight, Matilde, disconnected from reality and attached to her online avatar, devises a solution that unexpectedly involves Ernesto. The film's narrative deftly weaves a tale of desperation and choices, blurring the lines between the tangible and the virtual.
The focal point of the movie is Matilde's bold decision to auction her virginity as a means of financial salvation. Ernesto emerges as the bidder, driven by a yearning for intense emotions and the possession of purity. This narrative choice serves as a provocative exploration of the moral complexities that arise in the face of desperation.