7.0/10
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13 user 63 critic

Reaching for the Moon (2013)

Flores Raras (original title)
Not Rated | | Biography, Drama, Romance | 16 August 2013 (Brazil)
Trailer
2:04 | Trailer
A chronicle of the tragic love affair between American poet Elizabeth Bishop and Brazilian architect Lota de Macedo Soares.

Director:

Bruno Barreto

Writers:

Matthew Chapman (screenplay), Julie Sayres (screenplay) | 2 more credits »
9 wins & 19 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Miranda Otto ... Elizabeth Bishop
Glória Pires ... Lota de Macedo Soares
Tracy Middendorf ... Mary / Elizabeth's friend
Marcello Airoldi Marcello Airoldi ... Carlos Lacerda
Tânia Costa Tânia Costa ... Dindinha
Marianna Mac Niven Marianna Mac Niven ... Malu
Marcio Ehrlich ... José Eduardo Macedo Soares
Lola Kirke ... Margaret Bennett
Luciana Souza Luciana Souza ... Joana
Treat Williams ... Robert Lowell
Anna Bella Anna Bella ... Kathleen
Angelina de Sensi Angelina de Sensi ... Clara 5 years old
Kiria Malheiros Kiria Malheiros ... Clara 8 years old
Bruna Franca Bruna Franca ... Clara 3 years old
Joana Franca Joana Franca ... Clara 3 years old
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Storyline

Grappling with writer's block, legendary American poet Elizabeth Bishop travels from New York City to Rio de Janeiro in the 1950s to visit her college friend, Mary. Hoping to find inspiration on her sprawling estate, but she winds up with much more - a tempestuous relationship with her bohemian partner, architect Lota de Macedo Soares, that rocks the staid writer to her foundation. Alcoholism, geographical distance and a military coup come between the lovers, but their intimate connection spans decades and forever impacts the life and work of these two extraordinary artists.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Two iconic women. One passion.


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Four paragraphs appear between the end of the film and the beginning of the credits.

1. "Few women write major poetry. Only four stand with our best men: Emily Dickinson, Marianne Moore, Elizabeth Bishop and Sylvia Plath." - Robert Lowell

2. "I'd rather be called the 'The 16th Poet' with no reference to my sex, than one of 4 women - even if the other three are pretty good." - Elizabeth Bishop

3. Elizabeth Bishop died in 1979 in the United States. She is considered on the most important poets of the English language.

4. In 2012, UNESCO declared the city of Rio De Janeiro a World Heritage site. The Flamengo Park is one of its main attractions. See more »

Goofs

Luciana Souza's name appears twice in the credits - one in the main cast and later in the list of secondary characters. See more »

Quotes

Elizabeth Bishop: It's OK. I'm not drunk. I'm just crying in English.
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Crazy Credits

Nine of the main performers (the first 10) are listed in the credits without the name of their character. Only Treat Williams is credited as his character, Robert Lowell. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Programa do Jô: Episode dated 26 August 2013 (2013) See more »

Soundtracks

Blue Velvet
Written by Lee Morris & Bernie Wayne
Performed by Bobby Vinton
See more »

User Reviews

 
Elegant, rapturous throwback to old Hollywood
7 January 2014 | by Emma_StewartSee all my reviews

Reaching for the Moon is the kind of movie everyone hopes for but no one makes: a gay romance where "gay romance" is not the premise. Director Bruno Barreto focuses instead on how Elizabeth Bishop and Lota de Macedo Soares challenged and changed the world and each other in other ways, and that was absolutely the right choice - these women and their story are fascinating and make for top class entertainment.

And it is entertaining. Considering the characters' issues and the story's ending it could have been drab, but the film is always lively and engaging. It flies by. Bishop takes herself very seriously, but Barreto maintains a sense of humor about it and makes fun of her just enough to keep her melodrama under control. An added bonus is that Miranda Otto gets to show off her underrated and underused comedic chops; one particular drunk scene is priceless. Glória Pires is dynamic and fiery as Lota but Otto is the real star, channeling Greta Garbo and Deborah Kerr in a gracefully commanding performance. She doesn't shy away from Bishop's spikiness, but her screen presence is so compelling that as much as we might be frustrated with her character, we can't take our eyes off her. Thanks to her constantly surprising performance, an eclectic ensemble cast, breathtaking visuals, and assured direction, Reaching for the Moon pulses with energy and is a breath of fresh air in an era of stuffy and bland biopics.

Highlights: Shots of Rio de Janeiro that belong on postcards; a performance from Miranda Otto that would have won an Oscar in 1937; the assertion that some things are more important than whether a person is gay

Verdict: Watch this with your parents instead of Blue Is the Warmest Color


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Details

Country:

Brazil

Language:

English | Portuguese

Release Date:

16 August 2013 (Brazil) See more »

Also Known As:

Reaching for the Moon See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$14,573, 10 November 2013

Gross USA:

$45,502

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$1,534,391
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Color:

Color (35mm)| Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

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