Best Portuguese Feature Films - Instituto Camões

This is a list composed by sound feature films, commissioned by Instituto Camões. Instituto Camões (English: Camões Institute) is an institution created in 1992 for the promotion of the Portuguese language and culture world-wide. Instituto Camões has administrative and patrimonial autonomy, that, under the supervision of the Portuguese Minister of the Foreign Affairs, assures the co-ordination and execution of the external cultural policies of Portugal. The list was organized by José de Matos-Cruz, a Portuguese writer, journalist, editor, high-school teacher, investigator, encyclopedist. Since 1980 he works at the Cinemateca Portuguesa (Portuguese Film Archive), in Lisbon. He is a prominent historian of the Portuguese cinema.
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1.
A Severa (1931)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.5/10 X  
The (too brief) life, the (ardent) loves and the (too early) death of Maria Severa Onofirana (1820-1846)... (110 mins.)
 
2.
A Song of Lisbon (1933)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
After flunking in medical school, the young and bohemian Vasco need to trick his aunts, the main financers of his studies, preventing them to know that he is not a doctor. (85 mins.)
 
3.
As Pupilas do Senhor Reitor (1935)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  
Adaptation of a novel by Júlio Dinis, depicting the romantic and rustic life in Portugal, circa 1863. (102 mins.)
 
4.
Maria Papoila (1937)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  
A humble country girl moves to the city to work as a maid, eventually finding love and adventure. (105 mins.)
 
5.
Aldeia da Roupa Branca (1939)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  
Gracinda, a young laundry washer, lives with her godfather, "Uncle" Jacinto, and together they run a family business... (92 mins.)
 
6.
The Song from Earth (1938)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  
In Porto Santo, a small island next to Madeira the drought rages and Gonçalves, a local farmer, tries to overcome the catastrophe... (115 mins.)
 
7.
João Ratão (1940)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.0/10 X  
João Ratão is a Portuguese soldier in the Flandres battle-front, (98 mins.)
 
8.
The Tyrannical Father (1941)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  
Francisco, salesman in a shoe store, is totally in love with Tatão, which sells perfume in the same street. But he is an amateur theater actor, as she hates theater and is a fan of cinema. Will this unlikely love endure? (114 mins.)
 
9.
The Courtyard of the Ballads (1942)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
This classic of Portuguese cinema depicts the friendships and rivalries of the inhabitants of a square in downtown Lisbon, where exists a spirit of familiarity between neighbors. (121 mins.)
Director: Ribeirinho
 
10.
Ala-Arriba! (1942 Documentary)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
In a village of poor fishermen in the North of Portugal, João Moço and Julha fall in love. Unfortunately they belong to two different fisher castes and the community as well as their respective families condemn their love... (94 mins.)
 
11.
Aniki Bóbó (1942)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
The story takes place in the old streets of Porto and by the banks of the Douro River. A gang of very young kids has just accepted a new member... (71 mins.)
 
12.
 
13.
O Costa do Castelo (1943)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  
The unlikely love between Luisinha, a humble girl who lives on a small pension in Lisbon, and Daniel, a wealthy aristocrat who decides to fight for the girl who loves against the prejudices of his family. (135 mins.)
Director: Arthur Duarte
 
14.
A Menina da Rádio (1944)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  
Cipriano Lopes e D.Rosa Gonçalves são lojistas na mesma rua e detestam-se. Mas os respectivos filhos amam-se apaixonadamente... (106 mins.)
Director: Arthur Duarte
 
15.
Inês de Castro (1944)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  
Constanza, princess of Spain, meets Pedro, her promised husband and future king of Portugal. Amidst political intrigue... (92 mins.)
 
16.
Camões (1946)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  
The adventurous life of Portugal's epic poet, Luis de Camões. (118 mins.)
 
17.
Capas Negras (1947)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  
(103 mins.)
 
18.
Fado, História d'uma Cantadeira (1947)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  
Ana Maria loves a modest guitar player, Júlio; when she herself in a 'retiro' (typical fado tavern)... (110 mins.)
 
19.
O Leão da Estrela (1947)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
Anastácio lives in Lisbon and is fanatic for Sporting, one of the city's football teams. When the team travels to face Porto, he follows it with the family, staying in house of his friend, Mr. Barata, pretending to be rich. (121 mins.)
Director: Arthur Duarte
 
20.
Heróis do Mar (1949)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  
A thin thread of fiction, linking inserts of non-original documentary footage of Portuguese cod-fishers... (118 mins.)
Director: Fernando Garcia
 
21.
Frei Luís de Sousa (1950)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  
The tragedy of a woman who - after seven years of vain searches - gave up hope of finding her husband... (118 mins.)
 
22.
The Circus (1951)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
Lives of circus performers in times of decay. (98 mins.)
 
23.
Chaimite (1953)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  
From the military planning to front-line operations of discover conquest of Mozambique by the Portuguese... (157 mins.)
 
24.
Quando o Mar Galgou a Terra (1954)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.2/10 X  
Passion and ambition interplay to bring dissention and tragedy into the home of an old fisherman married to a much younger woman. (96 mins.)
Director: Henrique Campos
 
25.
Perdeu-se um Marido (1957)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  
(80 mins.)
Director: Henrique Campos
 
26.
My Little Seamstress (1959)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  
Aurora is a modest young girl, working as dressmaker for the women her popular district, near the OPorto cathedral. One day, through a hintz-dress design competition, she gets involved with a haut couture atelier. (103 mins.)
 
27.
 
28.
Acto da Primavera (1963)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  
Local people of Curalha, a small village, keep a tradition of representing the Passion of Jesus, since and according to a 16th text. (94 mins.)
 
29.
The Puppeteer (1962)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  
João Barbela is poor man who lives out of charity - what coins the people of Lisbon's popular districts give him as 'pay' for his puppeteering work... (102 mins.)
 
30.
The Green Years (1963)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
Julio, aged nineteen, has just left the provinces to settle down in the outskirts of Lisbon. He lives... (91 mins.)
Director: Paulo Rocha
 
31.
Belarmino (1964 Documentary)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  
Interview with a has-been boxing champion «who could have been great», probing, and soul revealing. (80 mins.)
Director: Fernando Lopes
 
32.
Sunday Afternoon (1966)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
Reflections on life and death through the eyes of a medicine doctor, researcher on blood deseases, under the anguish of consulting a terminally ill young woman. (90 mins.)
 
33.
Mudar de Vida (1966)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
After a stint in the army fighting in Angola, a soldier comes home to find his sweetheart has married his brother... (90 mins.)
Director: Paulo Rocha
 
34.
The Iron Cross (1968)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  
(146 mins.)
 
35.
The Circle (1970)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  
A look at the urban society of the seventies. The story of Marta a young and pretty girl, who leaves her husband to search for her true identity... (111 mins.)
 
36.
Past and Present (1972)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
Vanda is a young widow, with a number of marriages past her, who tends to venerate each deceased husband, as much as she betrays and denigrates the present one. (115 mins.)
 
37.
Just Peter (1972)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.0/10 X  
Pedro is a young agricultural worker who gets caught in the middle of a fight between two families, kills a man and escapes to the capital... (77 mins.)
Director: Alfredo Tropa
 
38.
The Message (1972)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  
(110 mins.)
 
39.
Uma Abelha na Chuva (1972)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  
(75 mins.)
Director: Fernando Lopes
 
40.
O Mal-Amado (1974)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  
The Soares are a bourgeois couple, living in a good neighbourhood of Lisbon, but João, their son, is not integrating well in that pattern... (100 mins.)
 
41.
Perdido por Cem (1973)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  
Artur is in Lisbon for his holidays, wonders aimlessly, and is picked-up by Rui, a young man who is into marketing and sdvertising... (105 mins.)
 
42.
Sofia e a Educação Sexual (1974)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.4/10 X  
After her mother's death, Sofia returns from a Swiss college to her family's luxurious villa, in Cascais... (101 mins.)
Director: Eduardo Geada
 
43.
Gentle Costume (1975)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  
A portrait of the everyday life of a typical middle-class family in parallel with the fall of the "Estado Novo"... (75 mins.)
 
44.
As Armas e o Povo (1975 Documentary)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  
Film directors with hand-held cameras went to the streets of Lisbon from April 25 to May 1, 1974, registering interviews and political events of the Portuguese "Carnations Revolution", as that period would be later known. (78 mins.)
 
45.
The Ghosts of Alcacer-Kibir (1977)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.4/10 X  
Through the decadence of a once noble and rich family, unable to plan the future of their members and the application of their resources... (91 mins.)
 
46.
Deus Pátria Autoridade (1976 Documentary)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  
The history of Portugal since the Republican revolution of 1910 to the revolutionary period following the military coup of April 24... (110 mins.)
Director: Rui Simões
 
47.
As Ruínas no Interior (1977)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.3/10 X  
During World War II, during a misty morning, near a fishermen's village, four children come across two RAF pilots ejected from a plane that crashed in the sea. (107 mins.)
 
48.
 
49.
Ill-Fated Love (1978 Mini-Series)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  
A story about doomed love between to people from different worlds and the impact in their lives. (260 mins.)
 
50.
Cerromaior (1981)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  
(90 mins.)
 
51.
Quilas, the Bad of the Picture (1980)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  
Kilas is a pimp who lives happy with Pepsi-Rita, fading sex variety starlet, and both lives at the expense of his God-mother... (124 mins.)
 
52.
Morning Undersea (1980)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  
Estefãnia is an old, rich, strict catholic woman, and when she sets her eyes on a couple of servants... (127 mins.)
Director: Lauro António
 
53.
Conversa Acabada (1981)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  
The film was to be a documentary, but evolved during production to a fictional film. It nevertheless... (100 mins.)
Director: João Botelho
 
54.
Francisca (1981)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
The life of a young man, son of an English officer who lets himself become a prisoner of love resulting in fatalism and disgrace. (166 mins.)
 
55.
Silvestre (1981)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  
(120 mins.)
 
56.
A Ilha dos Amores (1982)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
(170 mins.)
Director: Paulo Rocha
 
57.
No Trace of Sin (1983)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  
(104 mins.)
 
58.
A Noite e a Madrugada (1986)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
(100 mins.)
Director: Artur Ramos
 
59.
 
61.
Crónica dos Bons Malandros (1984)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  
(82 mins.)
Director: Fernando Lopes
 
62.
O Lugar do Morto (1984)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  
Alvaro, a divorced journalist with a complicated love life, watches someone he doesn't know killing... (120 mins.)
 
63.
The Satin Slipper (1985)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  
During the century of the Spanish Gold, Doña Prouhèze, wife of a nobleman, deeply loves Don Rodrigo... (410 mins.)
 
64.
O Vestido Cor de Fogo (1985)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  
José Pereira, a young medical graduate, meets a young and ardent Maria Eugénia. The time is the eve of the Portuguese Revolution... (92 mins.)
Director: Lauro António
 
65.
Balada da Praia dos Cães (1987)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  
In Portugal, in the 60s, the corpse of a man appears on Dog's Beach. The corpse is identified as the major Dantas, a man wanted by authorities after his escape from a military prison where he was awaiting trial for insurrection. (100 mins.)
 
66.
The Jester (1987)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.0/10 X  
Set four years after the Portuguese revolution and the simultaneous loss of the Portuguese empire in Africa... (120 mins.)
 
67.
Mensagem (1988)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  
(110 mins.)
 
68.
 
69.
Recollections of the Yellow House (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  
Lisbon, 1989. A middle-aged poor idiot, tormented by an illness, lives in a cheap room in a family boarding house, in the old section of the city's waterfront. (122 mins.)
 
70.
'Non', ou A Vã Glória de Mandar (1990)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  
Episodes from entire military history of Portugal are told through flashbacks as a professorish soldier... (110 mins.)
 
71.
Aqui D'El Rei! (1992 TV Movie)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  
(180 mins.)
 
72.
O Dia do Desespero (1992)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.0/10 X  
Portrait of the last days of the life of Portuguese writer Camilo Castelo Branco. (75 mins.)
 
73.
Terra Fria (1992)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.1/10 X  
In the forties, in a little settlement lost amidst the mountains of Trás-os-Montes, Leonardo tries to... (100 mins.)
Director: António Campos
 
74.
On the Edge of the Horizon (1993)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  
Spino, a pathologist, receives an unidentified body which looks familiar to him... himself, 30 years younger. (91 mins.)
Director: Fernando Lopes
 
75.
Abraham's Valley (1993)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  
Ema is a very attractive but innocent girl, so pretty that cars crash in her presence. Young marries Dr... (187 mins.)
 
76.
Três Irmãos (1994)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  
Lisboa, Portugal, mid-1990s. Three brothers, a young woman and two young men, are living together, careless of the future... (108 mins.)
 
77.
Adão e Eva (1995)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.0/10 X  
Catarina Menezes is a bisexual TV reporter who decides to have a child on her own and chooses Spanish humanitarian doctor Rafael to father the child... (104 mins.)
Director: Joaquim Leitão
 
78.
The Convent (1995)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  
The journey of Michael Padovic, an American professor who arrives with his wife, Helene, at a Portuguese... (91 mins.)
 
79.
Haircut (1995)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.7/10 X  
(91 mins.)
Director: Joaquim Sapinho
 
80.
Sinais de Fogo (1995)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  
The film presents us with a reflection on the Spanish Civil War in the Portuguese society, At a time when Salazar ruled.
 
81.
Five Days, Five Nights (1996)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  
In the 1940s André escapes from prison and is forced to leave the country illegally. In Oporto some friends arrange him a man... (100 mins.)
 
82.
Os Olhos da Ásia (1996)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  
(86 mins.)
 
83.
Elles (1997)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  
Five women, all near the wrong side of forty, face life's ups and downs together with laughter, tears, and sometimes irony. Their only imperative: live, love and live some more. (115 mins.)
 
84.
Tentação (1997)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  
Father Antonio is a priest by vocation, committed and generous, dear people of Vila Daires a quiet village of the north... (115 mins.)
Director: Joaquim Leitão
 
85.
Anxiety (1998)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
(110 mins.)
 
86.
The Mutants (1998)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
(113 mins.)
 
87.
As Bodas de Deus (1999)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  
(150 mins.)
 
88.
La lettre (1999)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  
A well-bred, lovely, spiritual, sad young woman marries an attentive physician who loves her. She feels affection but no love... (107 mins.)
 
89.
Jaime (1999)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.0/10 X  
A woman takes her young son, leaves her husband and moves in with her lover. The boy, desperate to get his parents back together... (111 mins.)
 
90.
Mal (1999)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.0/10 X  
This film about contemporary life in Lisbon concerns an Irish woman, Cathy, who dearly loves her Portugese lawyer husband Pedro... (85 mins.)
 
91.
April Captains (2000)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
Story of the 1974 coup that overthrew the right-wing Portuguese dictatorship--which continued the fascist policies of long-time dictator Antonio Salazar--and of two young army captains who were involved in it. (123 mins.)
 
92.
Word and Utopia (2000)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  
The story of Father Antonio Vieira, a 17th-century Portuguese priest who lived in Brazil and worked for better treatment of the Indians and to abolish slavery. (130 mins.)
 
93.
O Delfim (2002)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  
(88 mins.)
Director: Fernando Lopes
 
94.
Who Are You? (2001)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  
A historical classic drama in three acts, retold after an original prologue about dreams and nightmares of the thirteen-year-old noble heroine, Maria de Noronha. (112 mins.)
Director: João Botelho
 
95.
A Falha (2000)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.0/10 X  
Twenty-five years after leaving school, a group of former students decide to organise a reunion. But... (89 mins.)
 
96.
The Uncertainty Principle (2002)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  
Having lost her place among the social elite, a widow remarries and starts a family. (133 mins.)
 
97.
The Forest (2002)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  
Young man, of Portuguese nobility ascendancy, starts working in a rubber plantation in the Amazon, in 1912, and falls in love with pretty Yayá, a married woman. (105 mins.)
Director: Leonel Vieira
 
98.
Os Imortais (2003)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  
Every year, four ex-soldiers who call themselves "Os Imortais" ("The Immortals"), get together with... (130 mins.)
 
99.
A Passagem da Noite (2003)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.0/10 X  
Mariana is a 17 year old girl, who, after being rapped by drug addict, finds out she's pregnant and, in her path, discovers how difficult it can be entering adulthood. (95 mins.)
 
100.