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Aquarius (2016)

Not Rated | | Drama | 1 September 2016 (Brazil)
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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-storey ... See full summary »
37 wins & 39 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Sônia Braga ... Clara (as Sonia Braga)
Maeve Jinkings ... Ana Paula
Irandhir Santos ... Roberval
Humberto Carrão ... Diego
Zoraide Coleto Zoraide Coleto ... Ladjane
Carla Ribas ... Cleide
Fernando Teixeira Fernando Teixeira ... Geraldo
Buda Lira Buda Lira ... Antonio
Paula De Renor Paula De Renor ... Fátima (as Paula de Renor)
Barbara Colen ... Clara em 1980 (as Bárbara Colen)
Daniel Porpino Daniel Porpino ... Adalberto / Rodrigo
Pedro Queiroz Pedro Queiroz ... Tomás
Germano Melo Germano Melo ... Martin
Julia Bernat Julia Bernat ... Julia
Thaia Perez Thaia Perez ... Tia Lucia em 1980
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Storyline

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-storey building, built in the 1940s, in the upper-class, seaside Boa Viagem Avenue, Recife. All the neighboring apartments have already been acquired by a company which has other plans for that plot. Clara has pledged to only leave her place upon her death, and will engage in a cold war of sorts with the company. This tension both disturbs Clara and gives her that edge on her daily routine. It also gets her thinking about her loved ones, her past and her future.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

Brazil | France

Language:

Portuguese

Release Date:

1 September 2016 (Brazil) See more »

Also Known As:

Aquarius See more »

Filming Locations:

Recife, Pernambuco, Brazil See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

BRL 2,500,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$29,129, 16 October 2016, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$285,930, 18 November 2016
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This is the second time director Kleber Mendonça Filho has used real estate as a metaphor for complex social and political issues. His first feature, Neighboring Sounds (O Som ao Redor), focused on the changing urban geography of his hometown, Recife, in the Northeast coast of Brazil, as a means to tackle the social tensions within the city. See more »

Goofs

When Clara, who is annoyed by the noise from a party in the apartment above, decides to listen to a vinyl record, she picks up Queen's 1978 album "Jazz" and plays the second track, "Fat Bottomed Girls". But what is played is the shorter version of the song (released only as a single in 1978 and on the 1981 compilation "Greatest Hits") instead of the longer version from the album that is clearly shown spinning on the turntable. See more »

Quotes

Clara: It's impressive what people say about lack of education, and they always refer to poor people, but lack of manners isn't in poor people, it's in rich, well educated people like you, the elite, who think they are elite, who think they are privileged, who don't stand in line, you know? People like you who took a "business" course, but lack basic human decency, who have no character, you know? No character, no I mean, you do have a character; your character is money, all you've got is your ...
See more »

Connections

References Under Fire (1983) See more »

Soundtracks

Canções de Cordialidade - E a Princesinha Dançava
Written by Heitor Villa-Lobos
Performed by Sonia Rubinsky
Licensed from Editora Fermata Do Brasil LTDA
Courtesy of Naxos
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Ignoring all the political controversy surrounding this movie, what remains is a fantastic story.
2 September 2016 | by marcosleekim-955-164864See all my reviews

It is sad that a powerful movie like this is contaminated by political ideology from both sides. Although I don't necessarily agree with any of the positions brought forth by the makers of this movie, this is still a fantastic piece of art, a fantastic story about the struggles of a middle-aged woman against not only a very real real estate speculation movement in Brazil, but also against her past, the upper-middle class blame, the old age labels, her family, all directed by probably the greatest living director of Brazil today.

From IMDb synopsis, Clara, a 65-year-old upper-middle class mother of 3 children, refuses to sell her apartment, the last still occupied, to a big real estate company, built in the upper class, seaside Boa Viagem Avenue, Recife. Pledging to only leave her place upon her death, her building is probably the last remnant of a not so long ago past. Facing this conflict ahead mostly by herself, she will reflect upon her past and future and give her new strength.

Although the story can seem to be a bit clichéd, the movie excels in representing a middle-aged woman in an unique and independent way, something rarely seen in movies, where usually these characters are simply secondary, caricatures. There will be no big reveals and big turns, it is a mostly linear story (quite different from Kleber Mendonça Filho last movie, "O Som ao Redor", also critically acclaimed). But the way the director tells the story is what is so great. With a technique so sharp, he creates tension throughout the whole movie in ordinary situations (his trademark, an influence from John Carpenter), like in the scene where Clara and the real estate manager are simply maneuvering cars in the building's garage. This tension is what carries the whole movie, until the powerful ending.

In addition, the greater part of the movie has no actual direct connection to the its apparent central plot. Clara attending parties, talking to the lifesaver, walking with her nephew, having family meeting is what fleshes out her character, telling so much about her personality and her past indirectly, and this is the film's greatest strength. The moment she has with her 3 kids is maybe one of the greatest scenes in Brazilian cinema.

Forget all the political ideology. Watch it for what this movie really is, a powerful, fantastic piece of art.


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