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Limite (1931)

Not Rated | | Drama, Romance | October 1931 (UK)
Three people sail aimlessly while remembering their past.


Mario Peixoto


Mario Peixoto


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Complete credited cast:
Olga Breno Olga Breno ... Woman #1
Tatiana Rey Tatiana Rey ... Woman #2
Raul Schnoor Raul Schnoor ... Man #1
Brutus Pedreira Brutus Pedreira ... Man #2 (as D.G. Pedrera)
Carmen Santos Carmen Santos ... Woman eating a fruit
Mario Peixoto Mario Peixoto ... Man sitting at the cemetery
Edgar Brasil Edgar Brasil ... Man asleep in the theatre
Iolanda Bernardes Iolanda Bernardes ... Woman at the sewing-machine


In a drifting small boat, two women and a man recalls their recent past. One of the women escaped from the prison; the other one was desperate; and the man had lost his lover. They have no further strength or desire to live and have reached the limit of their existences. Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Drama | Romance


Not Rated






Release Date:

October 1931 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

Limit See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Cinédia See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Silent | Mono (sound-on-disc)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


First and only film written and directed by Mario Peixoto. See more »


Features The Adventurer (1917) See more »


Prélude à l'après-midi d'un faune
Composed by Claude Debussy
See more »

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User Reviews

Beauty needs no words
10 November 2010 | by SnorrSm1989See all my reviews

At first glance, it might appear somewhat ironic that LIMITE remains the one work with which most people identify multi-talented Mario Peixoto today. While Peixoto kept writing poetry, essays and various manuscripts throughout his life, this film remained his one contribution in the cinematic world. After its initial release in 1931, the film was virtually unavailable for decades, making it hard for the general public and historians alike to judge for themselves if this so-called "masterpiece" which Peixoto had produced in his youth really was worthy of so much acclaim. However, recently I had the opportunity of seeing LIMITE on a big screen with live musical arrangement, and I am forced to admit that the film's current status as a phenomenon has rather little to do with its unavailability; it remains genuinely impressive, starkingly beautiful to this day.

The story finds several mentally defeated persons recalling their past in a boat. Peixoto takes use of several flash-backs which might appear confusing, especially since there are only some very few title cards present throughout this silent film. However, exactly what the story is about is less relevant (and interesting) than how it is being visually executed, and furthermore the emotional impact it leaves upon us. Through his extensive use of close-ups, landscapes, storms and shadows, Peixoto manipulates us into imagining his visions as being truly real, physical presences. For instance, when showing us a group of people enjoying a Charlie Chaplin-short at a theater, his way of visually describing the term laughter becomes so convincing that we nearly forget that we, in fact, are observing another group of observers; they become part of us, and we flow within one another into one eternity.

Peixoto covers laughter, and he covers death, nature, despair and small-town life. You find yourself sitting at the edge of your seat not because you're wondering what's going to happen next, but due to what you're observing each moment. Even though it is evident that Peixoto was heavily inspired by earlier experimental film directors (the masters of German expressionism come to mind), one of the major reasons why it leaves such a profound impact is precisely because it was made at such a late point in the silent era; too late to make an impact on the silent medium, it is almost disturbing how bluntly it reveals exactly what was lost when silent films died. For a long time, the focus on dialogue in talking films made directors blind, forcing the film medium to take one huge step backwards in terms of aesthetics. Of course, things have changed to the better since that time, but LIMITE still remains a thought-provoking reminder as to not forget that film, after all, first and foremost is a visual medium, where beauty should play a central part.

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