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Brazilian baroque. The young son that ran from his dominant family, descends into decadence and then returns to the nest. With melodramatic themes of tyrannical fathers, incest, fierce family conflicts and an overheated and intense visual style to match. Written by
There may be two reasons why Luiz Fernando Carvalho was all over "LavourArcaica" to the point of exhaustion: he wanted to cover all bases to make sure his full vision would reach the screen, or he is a megalomaniac who has to put his signature in every aspect of the filmmaking process and only trust a few to share his view. I find this work good in sections, but even within these, not everything functions well all the time. Even if he did not have a shooting script as it has been told, but worked the novel as a succession of "reactions", his film is terribly verbose. Walter Carvalho's cinematography is fine, but repetitive, with multiple tracking shots of furniture, floors, nature, or distortions, when not trying to be simply "pretty"; and Selton Mello, while a fine actor, sometimes shouts as if he were performing on a Greek amphitheater for a distant audience. Simone Spoladore is beautiful but silent all through the film, until a late explosion which brings tragic consequences. The father is another wordy figure, while the rest of the family cries, and cries, and cries. A pity Carvalho (whose only feature film this is, while being a full time director of soap operas) did not adapt literature to moving images (this is not, by any means, the case), and leave the editing to someone else who could have reduced all those long tracking shots into reasonable length. Sex had never been so unexciting; while incest (a common practice all over the world, that may cause misery in someone's life or not) is glorified. In any case, watch its almost three hours if you believe in prizes... and this one has won dozens of them.
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