What to Watch Online this Week at Cinema Tropical
Cinema Tropical is proud to present the virtual theatrical release of Tali Yankelevich’s debut feature, My Darling Supermarket (Meu Querido Supermercado). This charming portrait of life and love in an urban Brazilian grocery store is set to premiere this Wednesday, February 24 at Film Forum here in New York City before a virtual rollout nationwide including Los Angeles, Chicago, San Francisco, Austin, Washington D.C., and Houston, among other cities.
Grocery store employees, today’s essential workers, get star treatment in this documentary which was shot just prior to the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. Set within a bright and colorful supermercado in São Paulo, this affectionate and humorous documentary glides through a seemingly endless array of vibrantly designed shelves and displays to center the perspectives and personalities of the employees. For anyone with an interest in the kernels of wisdom to be found in unlikely places, this doc is not to be missed.
The film is available to stream to audiences nationwide, rent it through your favorite movie theatre.
Premiering Online This Week:
Virtual Theatrical Release:
MY DARLING SUPERMARKET
(Meu Querido Supermercado, Tali Yankelevich, Brazil/Denmark, 2019, 80 min. In Portuguese with English subtitles)
“Grocery store employees, today’s essential workers, get star treatment in My Darling Supermarket (made prior to the pandemic). Set within a bright, colorful supermercado in São Paulo, Brazil, this charming, funny documentary glides through a seemingly endless array of vibrantly designed shelves and displays, but it’s the store’s employees who take center stage. Rodrigo (in bread) discusses quantum physics and parallel universes; Santo (a forklift operator) builds video game cities; a security officer tracks possible shoplifters on closed circuit TVs (“Two suspects near the condensed milk!”); Ivan (a baker) likes to dress as Goku, a Manga character; and then there’s the artist who lovingly paints the prices. A panoply of individuals with fears, hopes, and questions about their place in the universe are celebrated in a quirky portrait that juxtaposes their idiosyncrasies with the assumed mundanity of bringing food to our table.” —Film Forum
Virtual Theatrical Release:
(Isaac Cherem, Mexico, 2018, 95 min. In Spanish with English subtitles)
Leona is an intimate, insightful, and moving film that tells the story of a young Jewish woman from Mexico City who finds herself torn between her family and her forbidden love. Ripe with all the drama and interpersonal conflicts of a Jane Austen novel, watching her negotiate the labyrinth of familial pressure, religious precedent, and her own burgeoning sentiment is both painful and beautiful – there are no easy choices to be made and the viewer travels back and forth with her as she struggles with her heart to take the best path.
(Óscar Catacora, Peru, 2017, 86 min. In Aymara with English subtitles)
In Óscar Catacora’s acclaimed debut feature—the first Peruvian movie shot entirely in the Aymara language—an elderly couple living in a remote part of the Andes faces the challenges of daily life with courage and determination. Like the protagonist couple in Ozu’s Tokyo Story, Willka and Phaxsi stoically carry the sadness of being forgotten by their long-absent son, and yearn for him to return home from the city. With magnificent cinematography, this landmark film delicately draws the emotional story of the filmmaker’s grandparents, who taught him Aymara when he was sent by his parents to live with them at age seven.
WE ARE WHAT WE ARE
(Somos lo que hay, Jorge Michel Grau, Mexico, 2010, 90 min. In Spanish with English subtitles)
In We Are What We Are, first time Mexican helmer Jorge Michel Grau creates a deeply unsettling portrait of contemporary Mexican urban life which steady grows into many things all at once: a sincere family drama, an earnest exploration of the moral implications of cannibalism and a ribald satire of the seemingly intractable political and economic corruption that is haunting present day Mexico. All moody nighttime vistas and grim, claustrophobic interiors, Grau’s film manages both social commentary and grisly, bone-chilling terror the old-fashioned way, but it still manages to have a depth of human feeling that isn’t the stock and trade of this type of genre fare.
REAL WOMEN HAVE CURVES
(Patricia Cardoso, USA, 2002, In English and some Spanish)
Curves on a blossoming young woman can be sexy, but not if you are told you have too many of them. Real Women Have Curves is a humorous and warm hearted look at a Mexican American teenage girl coming of age in a boiling cauldron of cultural expectations, class constrictions, family duty, and her own personal aspirations. In this auspicious debut, Patricia Cardoso gives us a cast of characters we very rarely see—working class Latina women—with refreshing human complexity.
Films Available to Stream Now:
Sag Harbor Cinema Presents:
(O Som ao Redor, Kleber Mendonça Filho, Brazil, 2012, 131 min. In Portuguese with English subtitles)
Life in a middle-class neighborhood in present day Recife, Brazil, takes an unexpected turn after the arrival of an independent private security firm. The presence of these men brings a sense of safety and a good deal of anxiety to a culture which runs on fear. Meanwhile, Bia, married and mother of two, must find a way to deal with the constant barking and howling of her neighbor’s dog. A slice of ‘Braziliana’, a reflection on history, violence and noise.
(Kleber Mendonça Filho and Juliano Dornelles, Brazil /France, 2019, 131 min. In Portuguese and English with English subtitles)
A few years from now… Bacurau, a small village in the Brazilian sertão, mourns the loss of its matriarch, Carmelita, who lived to be 94. Days later, its inhabitants notice that their village has literally vanished from most maps and a UFO-shaped drone starts flying overhead. There are forces that want to expel them from their homes, and soon, in a genre-bending twist, a band of armed mercenaries arrive in town picking off the inhabitants one by one. A fierce confrontation takes place when the townspeople turn the tables on the villainous outsiders, banding together by any means necessary to protect and maintain their remote community.
Virtual Theatrical Release:
(Sin señas particulares, Fernanda Valadez, Mexico/Spain, 2020, 95 min. In Spanish with English subtitles)
Middle-aged Magdalena (Mercedes Hernandez) has lost contact with her son after he took off with a friend from their town of Guanajuato to cross the border into the U.S., hopeful to find work. Desperate to find out what happened to him—and to know whether or not he’s even alive—she embarks on an ever-expanding and increasingly dangerous journey to discover the truth. At the same time, a young man named Miguel (David Illescas) has returned to Mexico after being deported from the U.S., and eventually his path converges with Magdalena’s. From this simple but urgent premise, director Fernanda Valadez has crafted a lyrical, suspenseful slow burn, equally constructed of moments of beauty and horror, and which leads to a startling, shattering conclusion. Winner of the World Cinema Dramatic Audience and Screenplay Awards at this year’s Sundance Film Festival.
GENTE DE BIEN
(Franco Lolli, Colombia/France, 2014, 86 min. In Spanish with English subtitles)
Ten-year-old Eric is unhappy to be packed off by his mother, along with his dog Lupe, to stay with his father, Gabriel, whom he has seen little of in recent years. Living in a noisy boarding house in a rough and ready quarter of Bogotá, Gabriel struggles to make ends meet. However, Eric sees a different side to the city when he is taken to the home of one of Gabriel’s wealthier clients, a middle-class university teacher who is keen to help the pair out. Unfortunately, her altruism tests the father-son relationship in a series of unforeseen ways. With a memorable central performance by newcomer Brayan Santamaria as the angry, disorientated but hilariously funny Eric, Franco Lolli’s impressive debut demonstrates an assured grasp of storytelling, employing the power of suggestion, along with a great soundtrack, to present a beautifully observed social drama that explores notions of class in contemporary society.
THE PRINCESS OF FRANCE
(La princesa de Francia, Matías Piñeiro, Argentina, 2014, 70 min. In Spanish and Italian with English subtitles)
As in his critical hit Viola (2013), Matías Piñeiro doesn’t transplant Shakespeare to the present day so much as summon the spirit of his polymorphous comedies. Víctor (Julián Larquier Tellarini) returns to Buenos Aires after his father’s death and a spell in Mexico to prepare a radio production of Love’s Labour’s Lost. Reuniting with his repertory, he finds himself sorting out complicated entanglements with girlfriend Paula (Agustina Muñoz), sometime lover Ana (María Villar), and departed actress Natalia (Romina Paula), as well as his muddled relations with the constellation of friends involved with the project. As the film tracks the group’s criss-crossing movements and interactions, their lives become increasingly enmeshed with the fiction they’re reworking, potential outcomes multiply, and reality itself seems subject to transformation. An intimate, modestly scaled work that takes characters and viewers alike into dizzying realms of possibility, The Princess of France is the most ambitious film yet from one of world cinema’s brightest young talents, a cumulatively thrilling experience.
(Orfeu Negro, Marcel Camus, France/Brazil, 1959, 107 min. In Portuguese with English subtitles)
Winner of both the Academy Award for best foreign-language film and the Cannes Film Festival’s Palme d’Or, Marcel Camus’ Black Orpheus (Orfeu negro) brings the ancient Greek myth of Orpheus and Eurydice to the twentieth-century madness of Carnival in Rio de Janeiro. With its eye-popping photography and ravishing, epochal soundtrack, Black Orpheus was an international cultural event, and it kicked off the bossa nova craze that set hi-fis across America spinning.
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