Submitted by Evan B
Marcello shares one last happy day with his daughter before confronting Simone to demand his money and an apology. During the confrontation, Marcello kills Simone. Having completely snapped, Marcello drags Simone’s body at dawn into the center of the town square and awaits his fate.
Marcello (Marcello Fonte) lives a simple but happy life in his small Italian town. He is a renowned dog groomer. His greatest joys in life are going scuba diving with his daughter (and planning trips with her that he can’t possibly afford) and playing with dogs. To make ends meet, he sells small amounts of drugs on the side. Marcello is a nice guy and well-liked by his fellow small businessmen. However, he is also friendly with a local thug/cocaine addict named Simone (Edoardo Pesce). Simone intimidates all the storekeepers and often engages in petty crimes. Simone is very large and strong, often bullying the much smaller and weaker Marcello into aiding him in his crimes. Even then, Marcello tries his best not to hurt anyone (even going back to a house Simone robbed to resuscitate a dog that Simone and another accomplice stuck in a freezer while robbing the home).
Marcello’s relationship with Simone grows more fraught. One night, he witnesses Simone beat up two drug dealers (possibly to death) and then patches Simone’s wounds when he later gets shot. Meanwhile, the other businessmen grow increasingly angry with Simone’s destruction of their property, even considering hiring a hitman to take Simone out. Things reach a boiling point when Simone concocts a plan to break through the wall in Marcello’s grooming shop to access his neighbor’s gold-for-cash shop and rob him. Marcello tries to talk Simone out of the plan, but Simone threatens Marcello until he complies. With Marcello onboard, Simone promises to give him $10,000.00 in cash once the job is done. After Simone robs the gold shop, the police arrest Marcello as Simone set it up to look like Marcello committed the robbery. Marcello refuses to turn on Simone and goes to jail for a year.
When his time is up, Marcello returns to town. Having lost his apartment, he moves into the shop that used to house his grooming business. The other businessmen shun and insult Marcello for betraying them. Marcello eventually finds Simone, who has spent all the money and feels no gratitude to Marcello. Enraged, Marcello smashes Simone’s new motorbike with a crowbar. The next day, Simone finds Marcello, drags him to the center of town, and beats him to a bloody pulp in front of many uncaring witnesses.
A despondent Marcello takes a last scuba diving trip with his daughter but is unable to enjoy it due to his trauma. That night, he tricks Simone to his shop under the pretense that he and Simone will rob some local drug dealers. Marcello gets Simone to hide in a dog cage and then locks Simone inside. He demands Simone apologize and pay him what he’s owed. An enraged Simone manages to break out of the cage, but Marcello knocks him out with a club and then chains Simone to the wall with a choke chain. When Simone regains consciousness, he tries to kill Marcello. With no other option, Marcello kills Simone via hanging on the choke chain.
Just before dawn, Marcello takes Simone’s body out to a field and then lights it on fire. Having seemingly snapped, Marcello sees (likely a hallucination) the fellow shopkeepers playing soccer and desperately wants to be accepted by his friends again. Remembering what they once said about wanting Simone dead, Marcello puts out the flames on Simone’s now charred corpse. Marcello carries Simone’s body to the center of the town square as dawn rises. Marcello then sits next to the dead body, awaiting whatever fate befalls him.