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Aristides de Sousa,
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André is an 18-year-old boy who lives near an aluminum factory in the industrial city of Ouro Preto, in southeastern Brazil. One day, after a fatal accident that has occurred in the factory, he is sent to the home of the dead worker, Christian, to collect some of his belongings. There you will find a newspaper that describes the last years in the life of the worker, a man who spent his entire life in the midst of poverty and social oppression. The first film directed jointly by Joao Dumans and Affonso Uchoa tells the adventures, loves and despairs of Cristiano, a fascinating character whose lyrical gaze immerses us in the reality of the most disadvantaged class in Brazil.
The Brazilian film Arábia (2017) was shown in the U.S. with the translated title Araby. The movie was co-written and co-directed by João Dumans and
The film stars Aristides de Sousa as Cristiano, a working class man who has to settle for jobs involving unskilled labor. He travels down the road, always looking for a better job and a better life.
This film had some real strengths. It demonstrated the fate of an unskilled laborer who can never find a job has any meaning or gives him any satisfaction. de Sousa is a fine actor, and he makes his role come alive.
I found the movie discouraging, because Cristiano never attempts to improve his situation in any way. He talks about how his father organized a strike among fruit pickers, but he himself doesn't organize. He's likable enough, and he makes friends, but when he move on, he leaves them behind.
A previous reviewer called this a "A movie about hope," but I would call it "A movie without hope."
We saw this film at Rochester's wonderful Dryden Theatre at the George Eastman Museum. It was part of the excellent Rochester Labor Film Series. It will work well on the small screen.
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