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Mundo do Cinema, by Jr. Schutt Costa . 07/04/2016

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Foto 1 THE BLUE HOUR

THE BLUE HOUR ***

Thai director Anucha Boonyawatana’s film kicks off to a brilliant start: after being mysteriously hurt, a gay teen student trespasses an abandoned property where a secret encounter takes place. Despite the creeps of the place, known for its ghost residents and the haunted pool, Tam meets Phum for the ideal meeting, consuming each other, providing a very hot, unique sex-charged scene, without exploiting the young kids’ bodies. Different from many modern gratuitous filmmakers who believe audiences are craving for perversion and soft-porn, Boonyawatana uses a hotter perspective to arise sensuality: the heat is built on whispers, deep looks of delirium and touches. The boys learn of each other, becoming involved in mutual issues of bullying, prejudice, family acceptance and the dogmas of society; Tam is persuaded by his mother for a life-changing behavior, as she looks deeply in his eyes asking mercy; he wipes her tears and promises changes. But the next morning, the desire to see Phum increases, and they venture around looking for places to hang out and to consummate their intimacy. At one point, the film surprisingly changes its initial tone of a coming of age homosexual story to a gruesome atmospheric horror thriller, related to Tam’s enhanced vision and Phum’s unexpected appearances. After being chased by a gunman in a dumpster property once owed by Phum’s family, where they also discover a corpse, they will face enigmatic obstacles and unknown spirits in a series of bizarre and bloody situations. Convincingly performed by an attractive cast of young talented actors and told with exquisite narrative techniques, blending social issues, eroticism and popular demands, Boonyawatana proves to be efficient on all levels with this top class entertaining fresh ride. (Runs April 8-14 at MoMA, 11 West 53rd Street NYC)

Foto 2 NEON BULL

NEON BULL ***

Following his highly praised fictional debut “August Winds” last year, Gabriel Mascaro returns with a provocative and ambiguous look on a group of ordinary people moving around with a Rodeo troupe. Hailing from Recife and considered one of Brazil’s emerging young directors, Mascaro gained credibility for his raw sensibility and lyricism demonstrated since he began as a documentarian. The narrative centers on Iremar, the mysterious cowboy responsible for watching the bulls and his gifted hands in the conception of design clothing. While he lives in a stinky place, he dreams of one day working with fabrics. As a witness of his silent emotions and aspirations, the camera looks around him reflecting his reactions into a field of metaphors for human relations: a drunken co-worker constantly questioning his masculinity, the truck driver single mother on a nervous breakdown, her lonely little girl longing for a father figure, the dancer dressed as a horse, a pregnant perfume saleswoman and the dominating animals. Juliano Cazarré is superb as Iremar, giving a complex and moving performance stirring compassion and sensuality. Mascaro follows him with poetic subtlety and sensual ambiguity while revealing important facts of his personality and his connection to the hopelessly characters. He coordinates the whole process as a master, with authentic naturalism, contemplative shots on men, animal and Nature, and incredible control of his actors’ emotions. A work of grand bravura!  (Opens Friday at Film Society Lincoln Center, 165 West 65th Street NYC)


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