11 Days in New York with Brazil’s Best and Latest Screen Productions

    A newly restored Eastmancolor print of Marcel Camus’s Orfeu Negro (Black Orpheus) and Breno Silveira’s 2 Filhos de Francisco (Two Sons of Francisco) in its first U.S. week-long presentation will be the stars of MoMA’s Premiere Brazil.

    New York’s Museum of Modern Art will be presenting Premiere Brazil, its fourth annual exhibition of contemporary Brazilian cinema, July 13-23, 2006, in The Roy and Niuta Titus Theaters.

    This 11-film exhibition of fiction and nonfiction work from both emerging and established Brazilian directors includes the New York premiere of Breno Silveira’s 2 Filhos de Francisco (2005), which will have a week-long run at the Museum July 13-17.

    Among the other highlights of the exhibition is a newly restored print of Marcel Camus’s Oscar-winning Orfeu Negro (1959), one of international cinema’s best-loved films.

    The exhibition is organized by Jytte Jensen, Curator, Department of Film and Media, The Museum of Modern Art; and Ilda Santiago, Director, the Rio de Janeiro International Film Festival.

    2 Filhos de Francisco, the most successful film at the Brazilian box office in the past 20 years, is a rags-to-riches true story of the singing duo brothers Zezé Di Camargo and Luciano.

    Director Breno Silveira follows the lives of these sertaneja singers (a type of Brazilian country music) – and their beloved extended family – as they rise from poverty to chart-topping success.

    Among the other fiction titles in the exhibition are Beto Brant’s bold Crime Delicado (Delicate Crime, 2005), in which a subversive relationship upsets the well-ordered world of an art critic, and the world premiere of Sonhos e Desejos (Dancing in Utopia, 2006), director Marcelo Santiago’s adventurous feature film debut.

    The satirical gender comedy Se Eu fosse Você (If I Were You, 2006) by noted television director Daniel Filho, stars Glória Pires and Tony Ramos two of Brazilian soap opera biggest stars, and was one of Brazil’s box major office successes this year.

    Other highlights in the series include Sergio Bianchi’s Quanto Vale ou í‰ Por Quilo? (What Is It Worth? 2005), an ambitious exploration of money’s corrupting influence on mankind, and Joel Pizzini’s 500 Almas (500 Souls, 2004), a documentary which looks at the Guató culture, an indigenous cultural group dispersed around the Pantanal area of Brazil.

    Director and noted cinematographer Walter Carvalho returns to Premiere Brazil with Moacir. Arte Bruta (2005), a documentary about Moacir, an impoverished, deformed artist living in squalid conditions in a National Park – a man whose world of flora and fauna, religion and sex, saints and humans, and visions of mystical figures is revealed in his art.

    The restored version of Orfeu Negro (Black Orpheus) brings a new Eastmancolor print of Marcel Camus’s feature to New York audiences for the first time in many years. The poignant Greek myth of Orpheus and Eurydice, reimagined during Rio’s Carnaval against the infectious samba beat of the city, includes a soundtrack by Luis Bonfá and Antônio Carlos Jobim.

    Orfeu Negro is adapted from Vinicius de Moraes’s play Orfeu do Carnaval, and the exhibition also features Vinicius (2005), a documentary portrait by Miguel Faria Jr. of de Moraes (1913-1980), Brazil’s beloved poet, songwriter, and diplomat.

    The film is a social portrait of Brazil – its culture, lifestyle and music – focusing on the golden era of Brazilian culture in the 1950s and 60s, with appearances from Caetano Veloso, Gilberto Gil, Gal Costa, Edu Lobo, Chico Buarque, as well as more recent artists. It has been the most successful documentary film ever at the Brazilian box office.

    Brazilian cinema has emerged in recent years to occupy places in several critics’ Best Of lists and attain widespread commercial success.

    MoMA’s extensive 1998 exhibition, the 70-title Cinema Novo and Beyond, was the most comprehensive series of Brazilian films ever screened in the United States.

    Since then, a number of factors have combined to elevate the profile of Brazilian cinema worldwide: state-supported financial incentives to encourage local film production; the increased popularity of the Rio de Janeiro International Film Festival; the emergence of several new talents; and the consolidation of the reputations of more established directors.

    In Premiere Brazil MoMA presents an annual exhibition whose title is drawn from a sidebar of the Rio festival that presents Brazil’s most original and accomplished new films from a country that has become as well-known for its accomplishments on the screen as in the fields of music and soccer.

    All films are in Portuguese, with English subtitles. Most first screenings are introduced by their directors.

    This exhibition is made possible by George Gund III and Iara Lee, and The Ministry of Culture, Brazil; with additional support from The International Council of The Museum of Modern Art; The Consulate General of Brazil in New York.
     
    Screening Schedule

    Thursday, July 13

    6:00 2 Filhos de Francisco (Two Sons of Francisco). 2005. Brazil. Directed by Breno Silveira. With Angelo Antonio, Dira Paes, Marcio Kieling, Dablio Moreira.

    Based on a true story, a spirited parable of survival about a singing duo’s journey from poverty and tragedy to adulation and millions of records sold. Brazil’s number one box office hit of 2005 features terrific country-style music and compelling performances. 119 min. New York premiere.
    (Introduced by Silveira)

    Also playing:
    Friday, July 14, 8:00
    Saturday, July 15, 2:00
    Sunday, July 16, 3:00
    Monday, July 17, 6:30
    Wednesday, July 19, 8:30

    8:30 Sonhos e Desejos (Dancing in Utopia). 2006. Directed by Marcelo Santiago. With Mel Lisboa, Felipe Camargo, Sergio Marone.

    In his immensely assured debut, Santiago-who co-wrote the script with Carolina Monteiro de Barros-investigates passion and desire in all their forms with this story of a sensuous and intriguing love triangle amongst revolutionaries living clandestinely in Belo Horizonte in the 1970s. 93 min. World premiere.

    Friday, July 14

    6:00 Moacir. Arte Bruta. 2005. Written and directed by Walter Carvalho.

    The world of Moacir, a poor, black, deformed forty-two-year-old who lives in squalid conditions in a corner of a National Park, is gently brought to life as his private universe of flora and fauna, religion and sex, saints and humans, and visions of mystical figures is revealed in his art. 72 min. U.S. premiere.

    Dormente. 2005. Directed by Joel Pizzini.

    A stylish exploration of the darkness and daily journeys of trains and tracks, set to an evocative score. 15 min.

    8:00 2 Filhos de Francisco (Two Sons of Francisco). See Thursday, July 13, 6:00.

    8:00 Crime Delicado (Delicate Crime). 2005. Cowritten and directed by Beto Brant. With Marco Ricca, Lilian Taublib.
    A courageous exploration of the possibilities of human interaction, sex, and desire by a filmmaker equally attracted to risk. A critic respected for his shrewd reason has a chance encounter with a young woman whose very presence rocks his well-ordered world. She in turn has an unusual relationship with a painter. 87 min. U.S. premiere.

    Vinil Verde (Green Vinyl). 2005. Directed by Kleber Mendonça Filho. With Gabriela Sousa, Veronica Alves. A fairy tale for grown-ups only. 16 min.

    Saturday, July 15

    2:00 500 Almas (500 Souls). 2004. Written and directed by Joel Pizzini.

    An "ethno-poetic" film about the mythical and existential universe of the Guató culture, a group dispersed around the Pantanal area of Brazil. The film experiments with the relationship between indigenous language and cinematic language while reflecting on the culture’s image from the point of view of both mainstream society and the Indians themselves. 109 min. U.S. premiere.

    2:00 2 Filhos de Francisco (Two Sons of Francisco). See Thursday, July 13, 6:00.

    4:30 Orfeu Negro (Black Orpheus). 1959. France/Italy/Brazil. Directed by Marcel Camus. Screenplay by Vinicius de Moraes, based on his play. With Breno Mello, Marpessa Dawn.
    De Moraes’s retelling of the Greek legend, transplanted to Rio during Carnival season. An international hit, it won the Caméra d’Or in Cannes and the 1960 Academy Award for Best Foreign-Language Film for France; yet it is as Brazilian as its infectious bossa nova soundtrack and the exuberant spectacle of the samba schools dancing in joyful abandon during the parade. Newly restored print. 106 min. Restored Eastmancolor print.

    7:00 Vinicius. 2005. Cowritten and directed by Miguel Faria Jr.
    Vinicius de Moraes authored over four hundred poems and wrote lyrics for approximately four hundred songs (most famously, The Girl from Ipanema). His life and unparalleled career on Brazil’s cultural scene is recounted by friends and relatives and illuminated with rare archival footage. This spontaneous and lively documentary captures the creative essence of a beloved artist and philosopher of daily life. 120 min.

    Sunday, July 16

    2:00 Se Eu fosse Você (If I Were You). 2006. Directed by Daniel Filho. With Gloria Pires, Tony Ramos.

    When a celestial faux pas turns Claudio into Helena and vice versa, their family life and professional careers are turned upside down in this effective social critique and delightful satire of gender stereotypes. 94 min. U.S. premiere.

    3:00 2 Filhos de Francisco (Two Sons of Francisco). See Thursday, July 13, 6:00.

    4:30 Quanto Vale ou í‰ Por Quilo? (What Is It Worth?). 2005. Directed by Sergio Bianchi. With Ana Carbatti, Silvio Guindare.

    Bianchi’s most recent film retains all of the political urgency of his earlier works and ambitiously attempts to determine how money came to rule our way of life and our social interactions with friends and family. Moving through time, the film connects scenes of exploitation and social development in a visceral indictment of the significance of economic value. 110 min.

    Monday, July 17

    6:30 2 Filhos de Francisco (Two Sons of Francisco). See Thursday, July 13, 6:00.

    Wednesday, July 19

    8:30 2 Filhos de Francisco (Two Sons of Francisco). See Thursday, July 13, 6:00.

    Thursday, July 20

    8:00 Vinicius. See Saturday, July 15, 7:00.

    Friday, July 21

    6:00 Se Eu fosse Você (If I Were You). See Sunday, July 16, 2:00.

    Saturday, July 22

    2:00 Moacir. Arte Bruta.
    Dormente. See Friday, July 14, 6:00.

    4:00 Quanto Vale ou é Por Quilo? (What Is It Worth?). See Sunday, July 16, 4:30.

    6:30 Crime Delicado (Delicate Crime).
    Vinil Verde (Green Vinyl). See Friday, July 14, 8:00.

    Sunday, July 23

    1:00 Sonhos E Desejos (Dancing in Utopia). See Thursday, July 13, 8:30.

    3:00 Orfeu Negro (Black Orpheus). See Saturday, July 15, 4:30.

    5:15 500 Almas (500 Souls). See Saturday, July 15, 2:00.

    MoMA – www.moma.org

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