A Via Láctea (2007) Poster


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Love in the Time of Chaos
corrosion-216 October 2007
The Milky Way is an interesting film from Brazil. Heitor, a literature professor, meets and falls in love with Julia, a young actress. During the course of the movie we see scenes from their relationship where they both love and fight each other. Through the film Heitor is driving around the busy streets of Sao Paulo trying to reach and reconcile once more with Julia. This provides an opportunity for the director to interject characters from Sao Paulo's street environment in to the picture, from child beggars to crazy men with guns. The chaotic nature of life in Sao Paulo is contrasted with serene shots of Brazilian country side to further reinforce the impact of environment on personal relationships. The first encounter between Heitor & Julis takes place at a show by an experimental theatre company. In its way, The Milky Way can also be called an experimental and non conventional movie for those who are looking for something a little off the mainstream track of films.
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Outstanding for Brazilians
mr-milk-232-7745706 December 2011
As pointed out by another reviewer, the structure of the film is definitely based on Italo Calvino's short story "The Night Driver". I also find a shame there is no acknowledgment to Italo Calvino.

Having said that, I must point some specific things about the movie:

1) It is NOT an international film. It is for Brazilians, especially from Sao Paulo as it deeply explores the city and its characters. So, it is as tied to the city as it is to human relationships and inner feelings.

2) The movie is not very intellectual but it is not mainstream or cliché at all. It is pleasantly full of "uncomplicated poetry". Something an average person can understand without a companion dictionary. Again, foreigners may miss a lot due to translation.

3) If you have read the Italo Calvino's original story, you "may" find the end foreseeable. Even so, I don't think the installed chaos has just one and only foreseeable turning point.
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CamilaJimenezVilla9 October 2008
The film caught my attention and I went to the 2008 Raindance Film Festival (London) to see it. I am a big fan of Italo Calvino's work and the synopsis immediately rang a bell.

The structure of the story is identical to the structure of "Night Driver", one of Calvino's most interesting and visually compelling short fiction stories.

It was rather surprising not to see a single acknowledgement to the Italian author during the rolling credits, especially considering the fact the script writers often quote him directly.

Furthermore, I found the film didn't fully explore the structure and the possibilities the original "Night Driver" idea offered. The narrative was often clichéd and relied on a not-always-brilliant, voice over.

I found the performances not particularly convincing and the turning point at the end too easily foreseeable.
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