João Pedro Rodrigues and João Guerra da Mata lead Portuguese contingent in Locarno
by Vitor Pinto
03/08/2012 - The Last Time I Saw Macao [trailer] (photo), directed by João Pedro Rodrigues (To Die Like a Man [trailer]) and João Rui Guerra da Mata, is competing for the Golden Leopard at the 65th Locarno Film Festival, now in full swing until August 11.
Portuguese outfit Blackmaria and French outfit Epicentre Films co-produced this feature by both directors, after their short China China that was screened at the Critics’ Week in Cannes in 2007. This short film, despite the Asian reference in its title, was shot in Lisbon, but both filmmakers travelled to the old Portuguese colony of Macao, where Guerra da Mata grew up, to shoot their latest feature that is now competing in Locarno.
Guerra da Mata will also screen O que arde cura in the Pardi di domani (Leopards of Tomorrow) section at the festival. This short, that was screened at this year’s IndieLisboa, will notably compete against another Portuguese filmmaker, Gabriel Abrantes, whose short Zwazo tells the story of three teenage Haitians taking part in the performance of a play by Aristophanes on a square in Jacmel.
O dom das lágrimas by João Nicolau is to be screened in the Corti di autori (Auteur Shorts) section. The film is part of a project called “Historias y Visiones – Historias de Guimarães” (lit. “Stories and Visions - Stories of Guimarães”), a compilation of ten films by Portuguese directors about the heritage of the city of Guimarães, European Capital of Culture 2012.
Locarno will also give homage to the Vila do Conde Short Film Festival with the screening of four titles from its 20th edition held last July: Land of my dreams by Yann González, O canto do Rocha by Helvécio Marins Jr., O milagre de Santo António by Sergei Loznitsa, and Reconversão by Thom Andersen, about the work of the arquitect Eduardo Souto de Moura.