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 ... See full summary »
Luiz Fernando Carvalho
Juliana Carneiro da Cunha
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"Hoje é Dia De Maria" (something like "Today is Mary's Day") is an outstanding fantasy, a fairy-tale about life and feelings, seen from the eyes of a little girl, Maria(Carolina Oliveira, as a child, and Leticia Sabatella, adult - who played Natasha Henstridge's maid in the movie "Bella Donna"). However, besides such an unreal atmosphere, it's not made for children.
The cast of this magnificent mini-series also includes Fernanda Montenegro (Academy Award nominee best actress in 1998 for "Central Station"), a "primadonna" of Brazilian theater, cinema and TV, among other great actors, like brilliant Osmar Prado (Maria's father) and Stênio Garcia (Asmodeu), in one of their best appearances ever. By the way, Asmodeu, the devil, is played by seven different actors. What a finding!
Rodrigo Santoro (from "Charlie's Angels, "Love Actually") plays a sad "birdman", a young man who lives imprisoned in a body of a bird, in a place where the night never comes out, and everybody lives under a permanent sunset. In Maria's childhood, Rodrigo is the tinplate bird who protects the little girl Maria (Carolina, magnificent in her debut as an actress),when she decides, in her sweet innocence, wander round and round through the streets.
Rodrigo's character will fall in love with the adult and beautiful Maria (Leticia), since the day she finds him wounded and saves the bird of dying with an arrow in his chest.
The story reminds us the movie "Ladyhawke" (with Michelle Pfeiffer and Rutger Hauer) a bit, but you probably have never watched anything so beautiful as this story. The music is wonderful and the sceneries are all built with paintings! Creative, outstanding!!! The plot mixes some elements of the traditional fairy-tales and others of the richest Brazilian popular culture of the countryside. That's a finding and works it out very well. All the characters talk like the country-people of the Northeast, what demonstrates the careful work of the director and cast with this production and makes of "Hoje é Dia De Maria" something special.
Director Luiz Fernando Carvalho has done once more a brilliant work in "Hoje É Dia De Maria". This mini-series would be compared to his debut as a movie director ("Lavoura Arcaica"). The sensibility of his directing can be seen in both productions, what is a warranty of quality for the audience.
Definitely, this mini-series is a must-see, a small masterpiece which deserves to be found out, as well as little Maria's discoveries in her imaginary journey.
In October of 2005, Globo Television released the second part of this magnificent mini-TV series called : "Hoje É Dia de Maria - Segunda Jornada". That's another must-see.
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