Best Portuguese Feature Films - Instituto Camõesby mathildeswaitingroom | created - 21 Aug 2011 | updated - 21 Aug 2011 | Public
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)
110 min | Drama
The (too brief) life, the (ardent) loves and the (too early) death of Maria Severa Onofirana (1820-1846), better known as "A Severa", a beautiful gypsy who, besides being a prostitute, sang... See full summary »
2. A Song of Lisbon (1933)
85 min | Comedy, Musical
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.
5. Aldeia da Roupa Branca (1939)
92 min | Comedy
The story of how Gracinda, a young washerwoman, tries to revitalize her decadent business with the help of Chico, for whom she's in love, and her uncle, who has a fiery rivalry with Quitéria, owner of another laundry business.
6. The Song from Earth (1938)
115 min | Drama
In Porto Santo, a small island next to Madeira the drought rages and Gonçalves, a local farmer, tries to overcome the catastrophe, with the help of Bastiana, whom he dearly loves. João ... See full summary »
8. The Tyrannical Father (1941)
114 min | Comedy
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?
9. The Courtyard of the Ballads (1942)
121 min | Comedy, Musical
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.
10. Ala-Arriba! (1942)
94 min | Drama, Romance
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...
11. Aniki Bóbó (1942)
71 min | Drama, Family
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, Carlitos, a shy boy who has "played it tough... See full summary »
12. Ill-Fated Love (1943)
128 min | Drama, Romance
The fatalism caught up and the amorous tragedy between Teresa de Albuquerque and Simão Botelho, who survives the intolerant litigation of her noble families.
13. O Costa do Castelo (1943)
135 min | Comedy, Romance
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.
14. A Menina da Rádio (1944)
106 min | Comedy, Musical
Geninha and Fortunato are couple who loves music. He's a good songwriter, she sings well. Despite this, their parents hate each other and do not seem willing to allow their marriage, nor the creation of a local radio for them.
15. Inês de Castro (1944)
92 min | Drama, History, Romance
Constanza, princess of Spain, meets Pedro, her promised husband and future king of Portugal. Amidst political intrigue, Pedro falls in love with Inès, Constanza's aid. Inès returns hastily ... See full summary »
17. Capas Negras (1947)
103 min | Drama, Musical, Romance
In Coimbra, law student José Duarte and Maria de Lisboa lived a romance which ends when he goes away, achieving fame and fortune by singing. But she's pregnant and they will meet again when she's arrested by allegedly abandoning their son.
18. Fado, História d'uma Cantadeira (1947)
110 min | Drama, Musical, Romance
Ana Maria was a modest young woman who loves Júlio, her guitarist. But when she becomes a famous singer and Júlio, feeling abandoned by her, decides to go to the African colonies, she will have to choose between fame and true love.
19. O Leão da Estrela (1947)
121 min | Comedy, Romance
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.
20. Heróis do Mar (1949)
118 min | Drama
A thin thread of fiction, linking inserts of non-original documentary footage of Portuguese cod-fishers off the rich coasts of Newfoundland and Groenland. Heroic fights against raging seas ... See full summary »
21. Frei Luís de Sousa (1950)
118 min | Drama
Twenty years after her husband disappears in combat, Madalena is married again but fears the return of her first husband, as this would annul her marriage, his happiness and turn her daughter into a bastard. A classic of Portuguese cinema.
23. Chaimite (1953)
157 min | Action, Biography, Drama
From the military planning to front-line operations of discover conquest of Mozambique by the Portuguese, to counter the Vatuas insurgency of 1894, when they were led by Gungunhana, a ... See full summary »
24. Quando o Mar Galgou a Terra (1954)
96 min | Musical, Drama
Passion and ambition interplay to bring dissention and tragedy into the home of an old fisherman married to a much younger woman.
26. My Little Seamstress (1959)
103 min | Comedy, Drama
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.
27. O Primo Basílio (1959)
138 min | Drama
During the absence of Jorge, a mining engineer, Luísa, his wife, allowed himself to be seduced by Basílio, a relative whom he had broken years before, who had gone to Brazil.
29. The Puppeteer (1962)
102 min | Comedy, Drama
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. For the kids, he is like a king, Dom ... See full summary »
30. The Green Years (1963)
91 min | Drama
Julio, aged nineteen, has just left the provinces to settle down in the outskirts of Lisbon. He lives there in a poor area with his uncle Afonso and starts working as an apprentice ... See full summary »
32. Sunday Afternoon (1966)
90 min | Drama, Romance
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.
33. Mudar de Vida (1966)
90 min | Drama
After a stint in the army fighting in Angola, a soldier comes home to find his sweetheart has married his brother. He makes advances towards his sister-in-law, but she turns him down. ... See full summary »
35. The Circle (1970)
111 min | Drama
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. She doesn't quite know what she wants, but ... See full summary »
36. Past and Present (1972)
115 min | Comedy
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.
37. Just Peter (1972)
77 min | Drama
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. He can't find work,resorts to begging, but keeps ... See full summary »
40. O Mal-Amado (1974)
100 min | Drama
The Soares are a bourgeois couple, living in a good neighbourhood of Lisbon, but João, their son, is not integrating well in that pattern. He attends more political meetings than classes at... See full summary »
41. Perdido por Cem (1973)
105 min | Crime, Drama, Romance
Artur, in Lisbon for his holidays, wanders aimlessly, and is picked-up by Rui, a young man who is into marketing and advertising. Joana is in Lisbon for holidays, but also trying to escape ... See full summary »
42. Sofia e a Educação Sexual (1974)
101 min | Drama, Romance
After her mother's death, Sofia returns from a Swiss college to her family's luxurious villa, in Cascais. Through the relashionship between her father, Henrique, and his lover Laura, she ... See full summary »
43. Gentle Costume (1975)
75 min | Drama
A portrait of the everyday life of a typical middle-class family in parallel with the fall of the "Estado Novo", the 48-year dictatorship led by Salazar. The daughters' conflicts and ... See full summary »
44. As Armas e o Povo (1975)
78 min | Documentary, History, Reality-TV
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.
Directors: Manuel Costa e Silva, António da Cunha Telles, Acácio de Almeida, António de Macedo, José de Sá Caetano, António Escudeiro, Henrique Espírito Santo, José Fonseca e Costa, Luís Galvão Teles, Eduardo Geada, Fernando Lopes, Fernando Matos Silva, João Moedas Miguel, João César Monteiro, Glauber Rocha, Elso Roque, Alberto Seixas Santos, Artur Semedo, João Matos Silva, António-Pedro Vasconcelos | Stars: Fernando Balsinha, Álvaro Cunhal, Adelino Gomes, Júlio Isidro
45. The Ghosts of Alcacer-Kibir (1977)
91 min | Drama
Through the decadence of a once noble and rich family, unable to plan the future of their members and the application of their resources, one can see the decadence of the Portuguese empire,... See full summary »
46. Deus Pátria Autoridade (1976)
110 min | Documentary
The history of Portugal since the Republican revolution of 1910 to the revolutionary period following the military coup of April 24, 1974, recounted with a marxist perspective, using ... See full summary »
47. As Ruínas no Interior (1977)
107 min | Drama, War
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.
48. Trás-os-Montes (1976)
108 min | Drama
It's a docudrama with a poetic writing and non-linear narrative. Specifically, it's an "etnofiction": portraits the typical characters of Terra Fria, the North-east of Portugal, showing ... See full summary »
49. Ill-Fated Love (1978– )
45 min | Drama, Romance