Mino - A boy between the fronts

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Television series
German title Mino - A boy between the fronts
Original title Mino - Il piccolo Alpino
Country of production Italy ,
Federal Republic of Germany
original language Italian
year 1986
Tangram film
length 90 minutes
Episodes 6 (Federal Republic of Germany)
4 (Italy) in 1 season
genre drama
production Bernd Burgemeister ,
Claudio Biondi
First broadcast December 25, 1986 on ZDF

Mino - A boy between the fronts is a multi-part mini television series that was broadcast by ZDF in 1986 as part of its annual Christmas series. The script was written by Sandro Petraglia , Stefano Rulli and Pietro Schivazappa. Directed by Gianfranco Albano . The film is based on the Italian war novel Il Piccolo Alpino (1926) by the fascist Salvatore Gotta and has been rated FSK 12.


On Christmas Eve of the war year 1914, 10-year-old Giacomo Rasi, known as Mino, was going on a mountain tour with his parents when they suddenly got caught in a snowstorm and were buried in an avalanche. Mino is separated from his parents, finally discovered and rescued by a St. Bernard. Then the Italian major Lupo takes care of the boy and tries to place him in a boarding school. However, Mino runs away. At first he lives with two brothers in the mountains who earn their living smuggling. He thinks his parents are dead.

When Italy entered the war in 1915, the smuggler Rico was drafted into the Italian mountain troops, the Alpini . Mino follows his friend to the front after he was kicked out by his brother Bastian. He spent the following months with the soldiers of various units and was confronted with the war at first hand. So it happens that Mino is eventually injured. By chance, Mino learns that his parents are still alive. The mother is in a sanatorium, the father in Austrian captivity.

Mino crosses the border to Austria to find his father. He succeeds in this with the help of Count Karl von Stolz and his wife Freda, friends of the Rasi family. But the joy of seeing you again is short-lived. From Karl von Stolz, Mino and his father Michele learn of a planned offensive against the Italians. Mino wants to inform his friends about these plans and flee with his father. At first he refuses, but later follows his son. Mino manages to warn the Italians that the Austrians are ambushed. With his father, Mino finally tries to cross the border into Italy. While trying to escape, Michele is killed. But Mino manages to escape and he receives a medal of bravery for his efforts.

In 1918, one year after the Austrian offensive, the war ended and Mino returned to Milan with his mother.


The highly war-glorifying, fascist novel from 1926, in which the Italian-Austrian mountain war 1915–1918 is portrayed as an exciting adventure for young people, was defused in the 1986 television series by nationalistic and anti-Austrian passages.

In the novel , the protagonist was a boy who - although only ten years old - is already fully aware of his Italianità and therefore betrays his Austrian friends after they helped him find his father behind the front. As Piccolo Alpino (novel title) , it ensures that the Italian Alpini can victoriously lure the Austrian mountain troops into an ambush, and is awarded a medal for this. In the novel, this ungrateful behavior is portrayed as exemplary because it serves the well-being of the nation. The loss of the father is approved or presented as a necessary sacrifice for male maturity .

In the television series , although the basic plot of the novel was retained, through some conversations and reflections on the futility of war in general, an attempt was made to convey a more anti-nationalist and anti-war message to the young television viewer . The German translation by Werner Meier mentioned below is based on the same intention, which appeared in 1986 parallel to the television series and has largely been smoothed out and defused compared to the original text from 1926.


The novelist Salvatore Gotta was also the poet of the fascist hymn Giovinezza , which is comparable to the Horst Wessel song .


The six-part film adaptation of the boy Mino is available in stores on DVD . The German first broadcast took place on December 25-30, 1986 on ZDF. In Italy, the series started on December 28, 1986.


  • Werner Meier: Mino - The little mountain hunter. Loewe, Bindlach 1986, ISBN 3-7855-2081-6 .
  • Salvatore Gotta: Il piccolo alpino. in: Testimonianze fra cronaca e storia. 1914-1918: Prima guerra mondiale. Mursia, Milano 2008, ISBN 88-425-3981-3 .

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. Mino - A boy between the fronts on new-video.de, accessed on August 16, 2013.
  2. Mino - A boy between the fronts at fernsehserien.de
  3. Mino at IMDb