Cinematography: Brazil Burning


Camila Freitas
Brasilien 2019
110 min

Filmed over a four-year period to accompany the “Landless Workers Movement’s” activism to promote land reform in Central Brazil, CHÃO portrays an occupation as a dissonant intervention in the landscape. This extraordinary event cracks the monochromatic, homogeneous, dystopian territory with no sign of a working hand. Camila Freitas’ unique take on observational documentary consists in building an inventory of change. There is no routine when everything is provisory, fragile, made of wood and plastic, lit by candles, always threatened with disappearance. But the camerawork is steady, as firm as the tenacity of the old lady who works every day to keep up the fight while dreaming about her future piece of land. The collective lexicon begins to incorporate the political discourse, while keeping the exuberance of very particular accents, and the film finds a hundred different ways to repeat the same slogan. The immersive sound is as diverse as those multiple bodies – so different from the tedious group of old males in the judiciary court – who resist together, but also drink cofee with the same cup, eat with the same plate, share stories with each other and learn how to fight while fighting. Engaged cinema is one of the most inventive fields in Brazil today. CHÃO is a huge step in that direction. (Victor Güimaraes)

In the presence of Camila Freitas.

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