Júlio Bressane – Filme de Amor (2003)

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Two Girls and a Guy meets An Affair of Love in this erotic melodrama from the venerable Brazilian auteur Julio Bressane. The aptly-titled A Love Movie focuses on three philandering characters in Rio de Janerio who gather to discuss and philosophize on the subject of love, occasionally putting their theories into practice over the course of various trysts. Shot in black-and-white and color, A Love Movie premiered in the Director’s Fortnight segment of the 2003 Cannes Film Festival.~ Michael Hastings Continue reading

Júlio Bressane – O Anjo Nasceu (1969)

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Santamaria and Urtigo are two bandits on the run, one is white, the other black. Santamaria is a mystical visionary and believes in the imminent coming of a purifying angel. Urtiga, his inseparable companion, is a simple-minded and ingenious man who follows Santamaria around and participates in the crimes he commits. The two bandits take over a house after kidnapping its owner and his girlfriend. The film’s finale is classic, with music by the singer Luis Gonzaga and the “endless” shot of an empty road. “When I made O Anjo Nasceu I thought I had made my most difficult film, a completely irresponsible film, that space, that vacuum, that nothing. It was a devastating experience for me, a shock. Much, much more than Matou a Família e Foi ao Cinema, which was a well-received film. I think O Anjo Nasceu is still unknown territory, even for me” (J. Bressane).link Continue reading

Júlio Bressane – A Agonia (1976)

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A murder and a future teller meet in a desert road. He, driving his chevrolet, a short-cut hair, a rosemary leaf held behind his ear, a yellow shirt of shiny satin. She, walking on the paved road, heavy red lipstick on, a flowery dress with a loose skirt, and red shoes matching the lipstick. He offers her a ride and, after hesitating for a moment, the two of them engage on a bizarr love affair, an outlaw love, where boredom many times gives way to tragedy, raising the agony of a holiday spent in the abyss. Agony originarily means a fighter who fights on the limit of his endurance.
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Júlio Bressane – Matou a Família e Foi ao Cinema (1969)

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Carlos Adriano wrote:
This film caused controversy in 1969, not just for its content, but above all for its daring and sparse approach to that content. Today, it is regarded as a classic of Brazilian cinema. The title of the film was inspired by the headlines of the ‘gutter’ or yellow press. Right from the start the title is literal: a young, lower middle class man kills his father and mother and goes to the movies… to see Lost in Love. From then on the film-within-a-film takes over. Fiction and fact blend into each other and it is no longer clear on what level of ‘reality’ – or of the imaginary – we are existing. The film gets rid of the usual parameters of representation and the stories overflow their boundaries, that usually circumscribe action. In Lost in Love two upper-middle-class girls hide away in a mansion in the hills. But there is also an affair between two poor girls, there are two tormented young men of different social standing, there are references to the political context of the time. To make matters more uncertain, the same actors play different characters. The actions of social violence correspond to acts of violence against the syntax of the film itself: the discontinued and fragmented development, the daring ellipses, the juxtaposition of disconnected elements, the rupture of the sound space. Bressane works on his dialectics of discomfort. Projected onto the screen is a true ‘impression of reality’ and a ‘suspension of disbelief’ in the cinema. Continue reading

Júlio Bressane – Barão Olavo, o Horrível (1970)

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Bressane’s first color film, shot in the home of the artist Elyseu Visconti. Part of it is missing sound and final editing because the director was forced to leave Brazil. Horror and humor to deal with the subject of insanity: “In the end everyone leaves the house as though they were laboratory mice escaping, they invade the city and contaminate the world”. “If we talk about horror, this film deals with national horror, with Mojica Marins as an emblem. There might be a few touches of Corman and English horror, but it is another level of horror. What transformed the film was the location where we were shooting, the house of a 19th century painter, a receptacle of light. When I arrived and saw that house, that light, I said: ‘This is the film. This is the horror’. The meaning of the film, its appeal, derives from this laboratory of light” (J. Bressane). — Torino Film Festival Continue reading

Júlio Bressane – O Mandarim aka The Mandarin (1995)

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The history of Brazilian popular music in the 20th Century, focusing specially on the life and works of intriguing singer Mário Reis, a loner who, with his special way of singing – whispering and softly saying the words – in a time when singers with potent voices ruled, was in a way a forerunner of Bossa Nova style. Continue reading