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13 out of 13 people found the following review useful:

Very, very impressive

Author: AndrewPalmer from Los Angeles
24 September 2002

I've seen films in Portuguese language made in Brazil but I think this is the first Portuguese film I've seen that is actually made in Portugal... And no doubt one of the most hypnotizing and exciting action comedies I've ever seen.

The story takes place on Christmas and centers on Alex, whose life has been a flood of misfortunes. Miserable, he decides to take his life. He drinks a toxic mixture and waits for it to take its effect... As the minutes pass, his life suddenly is turned upside down by a serious of events that give him a whole new reason to face the world. His new found strength is tested as he sets out on this crazy adventure in search of the only antidote that can save him.

Fernando Fragata's "Chasing Life" offers nearly 90 minutes of torture; but thankfully, of the good kind. Anyone can really sympathize with having an excruciatingly bad day, but Alex Ventura's (chimney cleaner) hell, is by far the funniest ever put on celluloid. This is a movie that almost physically hurts to watch. You get so drawn in to the situation that it feels like it's you stuck there. The movie keeps on balancing between funny and tragic, it never falls and the situations have enough realism to keep you on the edge of your seat. This is simply a story about a guy having the worst day of his life.

Rating: 9/10

Most Memorable Movie Moment: The stone hitting the car and pushing it down the cliff.

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7 out of 9 people found the following review useful:

Surprisingly wonderful film!

Author: MagicSilver
15 September 2002

Non-stop, compelling and hilarious at the same time, CHASING LIFE is the kind of movie you simply can't walk away from. A breathless exercise in full-speed-ahead storytelling, it never once falters; never once trips over its own intentions. The camera work is great and the Police shoot out scenes are excellent considering the limited budget. Superb performance of Helder Mendes. Recommended viewing. Just remember to fasten your seatbelt.

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4 out of 4 people found the following review useful:


Author: GhostOfMagellan from UK
29 July 2002

A perfect action dark comedy movie with great performances. The directing, the story and acting are brilliant. The story doesn't slow down and you might expect a rather stupid plot in an action comedy movie, but it's not. This happens to have a really good plot. It's exciting, hilarious and makes the adrenaline rush through your body. It's non-stop action and leaves you breathless till the very the end! Very surprising for a film that comes from Portugal. 9 out of 10!

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3 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

Funny, ironic and action packed!

Author: Ricardo Oliveira from Lisbon, Portugal
11 March 2002

This is definitely the best Portuguese film I've seen in a long, long time! Actually, I had already lost hope of watching an interesting Portuguese film. Needless to say, I was completely surprised by this one. Not only it tells us a thrilling story but it goes deeper by playing sarcastically with life and death. Imagine a suicidal man that wants nothing but to live! It's life's irony at its best! The lead actor's performance (newcomer Helder Mendes) is just superb. Amazingly, this is the first Portuguese action film ever made and a brilliant one it is! Thank you so much Fernando Fragata for bringing back to life, the art of making movies in Portugal!

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2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

Delightful story, wonderful acting, beautifully made!

Author: winoscar2000 from London, UK
20 September 2002

This film really is a small gem. I saw this film at a private screening. The fact that I had to read subtitles because it was shot in Portuguese didn't take any of the limelight away from a dazzling script and a fantastic 85 minutes fantasy. Suffice to say that I am not easily impressed, but I have to admit I thoroughly enjoyed this movie on all levels. It is essentially a romance, even though the hero and heroine spend few scenes together. Digging deeper, one discovers that it's also about the role of fate in every day life. Great twists and turns. Sometimes dark, sometimes sweet but always hilarious. CHASING LIFE is definitely worth 85 minutes of your life!

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