In the 1950s, two young brothers, Achille and Giovanbattista Judica-Cordiglia, were amateur radio and cinema enthusiasts, messing around with their equipment in their home in Tornio. On the night of October 4, 1957, the USSR launched their first man-made satellite, Sputnik 1 and the lives of the two brothers changed irrevocably.
The brothers were the first people in Europe to record the signal of Sputnik 1. Other recordings followed including the sound of the heart-beat of the first being in space - the dog Laika.
So that they could continue their eavesdropping on space, the brothers designed and built antennae and calibrated them to the satellite signals. Weeks of work resulted in extraordinary data. When the USA launched its first satellite, Explorer the brothers were ready to intercept its signal. Having determined what type of antenna would be suitable to receive Explorer's signal, they raced up to the roof of their apartment building with lengths of aluminium and iron tubing and set about building it. "And suddenly the unbroken signal of the Baby Luna, of the Explore 1 came through our receivers. And of course, we recorded it."
But one night, in 1961, prior to Yuri Gagarin's historical mission, they recorded something quite different from the usual static - heavy laboured breathing and a strained heartbeat. The pair had picked up the sounds of a Russian cosmonaut only seconds before his death.
As the two superpowers, the USA and the USSR sought to gain technological, military and ideological supremacy, the two brothers kept on recording the developments in the Cold War space race.
Today, in a society that takes global communication for granted, Achille and Giovanbattista's pioneering work has been largely forgotten. Yet their incredible private archive, made up of unique audio-recordings and 8mm and Super 8mm films remains a testament to their enthusiasm, talent and curiosity. (A French, Italian and Australian co-production, in Italian and English, English subtitles)