Manoel de Oliveira: CHAFARIZ DAS VIRTUDES
This year's trailer of the Viennale, the 21st since 1995, was made by the Portuguese filmmaker Manoel de Oliveira.
Oliveira is at the age of 105 years not only the probably oldest filmmaker who is still active, but also one of the big masters in the history of cinema.
His first film DOURO, FAINA FLUVIAL originated in 1931 - his last up to now, the short O VELHO DO RESTELO was shot this summer. 83 years are between those two movies...
The trailer of the Viennale derives from the invitation of the festival to the filmmaker. It has originated in the connection and during the work on his new 20-minute film O VELHO TH RESTELO which had his world premiere a few weeks ago at the film festival of Venice. In this film, a series of free associative fantasies about literature, history and the figure of the Don Quijote, a water-spouting fountain is to be seen for some moments, a setting which resolves in a cross-fade to sea waves, whilethe voice of the narrator is to be heard.
For his trailer, Oliveira has chosen the same setting. It shows a baroque wall fountain in the Portuguese town of Porto, which is called „Chafariz das Virtudes“ i.e. „The fountain of virtues“. Porto is the very town in the north of Portugal in which Manoel de Oliveira was born and has been growing up and which is still today a central reference point of the artist. The fountain, which was dried-out for many years, was brought back to life again especially for this film.
Unlike in O VELHO DO RESTELO the fountain in the Viennale Trailer stands completely for itself: For the duration of one minute and a single shot, accompanied only by the noise of the flowing water.
„It is“, Viennale director Hans Hurch says, „a pure picture of the passing time, the trickling away of life, of the present and the irretrievably lost at the same time. And it is maybe the most simple and mysterious of all Viennale trailers for me. While watching this strange cinematic haiku, I have to think over and over again about this long, rich life of that old man from Porto who has given us this film.“
CHAFARIZ DAS VIRTUDES
by Manoel de Oliveira
Camera: Renato Berta
Editor: Valérie Loiseleux
Sound: Henri Maikoff