Clara, a 65 year old widow and retired music critic, was born into a wealthy and traditional family in Recife, Brazil. She is the last resident of the Aquarius, an original two-story ... See full summary »
After discovering the truth about being stolen by the woman he thought was his mother as a child, Pierre (AKA Felipe) must deal with the consequences of his mother's actions and must try to cope with his biological family.
André, relatively poor, falls in love with Silvia, a neighbor whom he spies with a telescope. Falling more and more in love with her, he begins to follow her around the city and realizes ... See full summary »
Renata de Lélis,
A trip to the mental institution hell. This odyssey is lived by Neto, a middle class teenager, who lives a normal life until his father sends him to a mental institution after finding drugs... See full summary »
The lively João Grilo and the sly Chicó are poor guys living in the hinterland who cheat a bunch of people in a small Northeast Brazil town. But when they die, they have to be judged by ... See full summary »
Sbórnia is an island with a rich but eccentric culture, separated from the rest of the world by a high wall. When the wall comes down, cultural change plays hilarious havoc on the lives of two traditional Sbórnian musicians.
In the great restaurant of life, there are those who eat and those who get eaten. Raimundo Nonato finds an alternative way, a life of his own: he cooks in order to survive and find a place ... See full summary »
Val spends 13 years working as nanny to Fabinho in São Paulo. She is financially stable but has to live with the guilt of having left her daughter Jéssica, in Pernambuco, in the northeast of Brazil, raised by relatives. As college entrance exams roll around, Jéssica wants to come to São Paulo to take her college entrance exams too. When Jéssica arrives, cohabitation is not easy. Everyone will be affected by the personality and candor of the girl and Val finds herself right in the middle of it.
Examining Brazilian class differences: "This country is really changing"
"The Second Mother" (2015 release from Brazil; 112 min.; original title "Que Horas Ela Volta?" or "What Time Will She Be Back?") brings the story of Val, who has been working as a live-in maid for many years (later we learn it's about 15 years) at a well-off family in Sao Paolo. She's part of the family, yet of course knows the rules of the do's and don't's that come with being the maid. Then out of the blue appears Val's daughter Jessica, whom she hasn't seen in years. Jessica wants to study to take the entrance test at the FAU (Architecture and Urbanization School). As it happens, Fabinho, the son of the family, is as well. On top of that, Jessica has different ideas as to what rules she should or shouldn't abide by, being the daughter of the live-in maid. To tell you more would spoil your viewing experience, you'll just have to see for yourself how it all plays out.
Couple of comments; this is the latest movie from noted Brazilian writer-director Anna Muylaert (a very Belgian name indeed). She has previously brought us "The Year My Parents Went On Vacation", among others. Here she looks at the class differences in Brazilian society, something that Brazilian cinema has a long history and track record in. There are a number of telling scenes in the movie, none more so (for me anyway) when Jessica tells the well-off family that she plans to take the notoriously difficult and selective FAU entrance exam. "This country is really changing" mutters the mother, in what could be a positive way, but really is a condescending tone. While the movie is billed as a drama, there are plenty of lighter moments in it as well, usually courtesy of Regina Case in the role of Val. The whole movie is on her shoulder, and she does is with a wink and a smile. As to the movie's US title, which departs significantly from the original title, you will see in the movie that there are several ways to interpret that. One minor negative is that the movie is a bit long for its own good. With some tighter editing, this could've been about 15 min. shorter without losing much. But in the end it's a minor quibble.
I saw this movie on what turned out to be the last day of its one week run at my local art-house theater here in Cincinnati. Not surprisingly, the early evening screening where I saw this at was not well attended. Maybe this will find a second life when it comes out on DVD. If you are in the mood for a top quality foreign movie that's short on 'action' but long on substance, you cannot go wrong with this, be it at the theater, on VOD or on DVD/Blu-ray. "The Second Mother" is HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!
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