Posted by paulrivas on:
Every big city in Latin America has slums at its edges and in certain of its corners. Brazil has more people than the US and three times the population of the next largest Latin American country. Why wouldn’t there be three films dealing with Brazilian favelas in a Santa Barbara festival?
Of those films, 5 x favela – agora por nós mesmos (the 'x' is read as 'vezes', Portuguese for 'times'), is actually five short films, which makes it the best bet of the three Brazilian slum movies: if one of the five sucks, fuck it, there’s four more that might be good! In fact, all five of these are good. The monoglot who presented the film said that the third one was actually his favorite, but why would anyone care what he thinks?
The subjects of this collection are a drug dealing law student, a child chicken thief, a cop/gangster/chick trio, kite enthusiasts on opposing sides of the river, and an electric company man who pulls emergency slum duty on Christmas. Taken as a whole, 5 x favela is an accurate treatment of Latin America slum life. Yes, that’s where the worst drug dealers are. Yes, everybody knows somebody who’s involved in something illegal. Yes, residents distrust the authorities for good reason. But most people are just trying to live normal lives.
Go see 5 x favela Monday, 1/31, 10pm at the Metro or Wednesday, 2/2, 7:40pm at the Lobero.