Friday, January 26, 2024
The life of a true cinephile is one constantly haunted by the dead, as the history of the movies is a corridor of ghosts. Brazilian filmmaker and unrepentant cinema obsessive Kleber Mendonça Filho’s new documentary—Brazil’s official entry for Best International Feature Film at the 2024 Academy Awards—serves as a poignant testament to the liminal state of movie love. It tells, in three chapters, the story of his cinematic world—namely the city of Recife, where his youthful film education took place. At theaters like the Veneza and the São Luiz, Mendonça discovered a popular art form that would change his life; today, with the landscape of the city altering drastically, he surveys its empty rooms now pregnant with memories. This moving and playful film, as much about the architectural and social structures of a city as about the movies that inspire and haunt us, honors the personal spaces that are also the communal lifeblood of our urban centers. An NYFF61 Main Slate selection. A Grasshopper Film and Gratitude Films co-release.
Recommended Film Comment reading:
- The Film Comment Podcast: Pictures of Ghosts (Cannes 2023)
- The Film Comment Podcast: Kleber Mendonça Filho & Juliano Dornelles
- Interview: Kleber Mendonça Filho and Juliano Dornelles on Bacurau (2019)
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