2 July 2008 | lotus07
Manifest Destiny and Elbow Room In Brazil
SYNOPSIS: A small band of circus performers drift through the hinterlands of 1970s Brazil looking for opportunity and freedom.
CONCEPT IN RELATION TO THE VIEWER: Escaping your everyday life and throwing caution to the wind to chase your dreams. Only to find out that your dreams aren't what you thought and that there is a big difference between lust and love.
PROS AND CONS: This is an interesting film on several levels. It shows a part of the world that is quickly disappearing. The idea that you can run off into undeveloped country and live off your wits and the kindness / stupidity of others is quickly fading in modern society. That wasn't the case in 1970s Brazil where the vast interior was full or opportunity and little else.
In this film a young man and his pregnant wife flee the poverty of rural Brazil to join the CARNIVAL ROLIDEI, a rag-tag group consisting of a charismatic con man, his dancer / prostitute girlfriend and a mute strong-man. They travel the dirt roads of Brazil, seeking peasants that are easily entertained by their simple tricks and lusty burlesque shows. Along the way, the young man and his wife come to question their fidelity and their expectations about life and one another.
The film is shot on location and the performances are very good. There is a surreal quality to the imagery that owes a tip of the hat to Federico Fellini. There is also something about the Porteguese language that is very lyrical, especially the title song that is heard throughout the film and over the end credits.
The underlying message is that freedom is not an easy thing to find. Escaping from the trappings of modern society, escaping from the trappings of your own lifestyle and the escape from the ones you love is almost impossible. None of these characters wants to be tied down, but they are tied to the desires that are at their core. They all learn from each other in the end.
This film reminds me why I have the desire to take off and see new lands where I have never been and be amazed at the unknown that I have never seen, and why in the end, I always return to my home, where I feel safe.