Gangsters to Favela: Brazilian film fest hits town

04/07/2009 at 11:25 am Leave a comment


Among the eight features and six shorts offered at this year’s Brazilian Film Festival of Vancouver, playing at the Vancity Theatre Wednesday through next Sunday (July 8 to 12), standouts include smart documentaries and several zippy thrillers.


Kicking off the second installment of this touring event is Verônica, which follows the flight of a schoolteacher after her student is stranded with valuable information sought by ruthless gangsters. The lead, popular TV star Andréa Beltrão, is married to the movie’s director, Maurício Farias, who was scheduled to come to Vancouver for the fest. Instead, we’ll get a visit from Bruno Barreto, with his latest creation, Last Stop 174, a fictional re-creation of the 2000 hostage crisis that anchored a popular doc, Bus 174.


Perhaps the most widely known Brazilian filmmaker, Barreto made homegrown hits like Gabriela and Dona Flor and Her Two Husbands and the English-language View From the Top, Carried Away, and Bossa Nova (the last two starring then-wife Amy Irving). Also on hand will be Joel Zito Araújo, maker of Cinderellas, Wolves, and One Enchanted Prince, a provocative, if repetitive, documentary on relationships between European men and Brazilian mulatas, or mixed-race women.


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