(Carlota Joaquina, Brazilian Princess)
Dir: Carla Camurati
100 min., 35mm, 1:1.66, Color
Produktion: Elimar Produções Artísticas, Carla Camurati, Bianca de Felippes. Buch: Carla Camurati, Melanie Dimantas. Kamera: Breno Silveira. Musik: André Abujamra, Armando Souza. Ausstattung: Emilia Duncan, Tadeu Burgos. Schnitt: Marta Luz, Cézar Migliorim. Ton: Aloísio Compasso.
Darsteller: Marieta Severo (Carlota), Marco Nanini (D. João), Maria Fernanda, Ludmila Dayer, Brent Hieatt, Marcos Palmeira, Eliana Fonseca, Norton Nascimento, Beth Goulart, Aldo Leite, Antonio Abujamra, Bel Kutner.
Uraufführung: 17. Januar 1995, Rio de Janeiro.
Weltvertrieb: Elimar Produções Artísticas. Nina Rodrigues 49/ 102, 22.461-100 Rio de Janeiro/ Brasilien. Tel.: (5521) 537 03 30. Fax: 259 09 61.
Fri 21.02. 11:00 Delphi Sun 23.02. 18:30 Kino 7 im Zoo Palast
known to be a quiet, indifferent and rustic character.
Portugal 1808. The Portuguese court is threatened by Napoleon's armies and the British crown's expansionist desires. After squandering the country's fortune, Don João packs his court into several caravels and crosses the Atlantic to Brazil. The royal family is filled with consternation at the sight of Brazil's many races, living south of the equator in an atmosphere of mutual tolerance. They face grave difficulties trying to assert the authority of European royalty in their new land. The heirs of the Bragança dynasty grow up in this charged atmosphere. Don João acts like a monarch. Dona Carlota experiences a passionate romance with a young black man, her racial prejudices notwithstanding. She conceives one child after another.
Years later Don João decides to return to Portugal, his wealth having doubled.
CARLOTA JOAQUINA, PRINCESS OF BRAZIL is the film that might have resulted if Monty Python had attempted to recount the history of 18th century Brazil. Defying classification, this surreal historical comedy, told like a fairy tale, is currently the top-ranking film on its home turf. Though too far-out for wide-audiences, it might click offshore with very careful handling, and will certainly delight fest auds willing to experiment.
Pic is the first feature directed by young Brazilian actress Carla Camurati, who also co-produced and co-scripted. The main story is framed by a bizarre narrator, a young man in a kilt sitting on a rocky promontory in Scotland, who tells a story about princesses to 10-year-old Yolanda on a rocky beach. Initial impression that this is a kidpic is strong, but wrong, as some lusty sex scenes will later show. In reality, the whole film is a clever, mocking history lesson for adults. It entertains with eccentricity, while recounting the sordid truth about the royal family that laid the foundations for modern Brazil. (...)
In 1808, Napoleon marches on Portugal and sends the royal family fleeing across the Atlantic with the treasury, leaving their terrified subjects to get by. After three horrible months at sea, they reach their rich South American colony. With overbearing arrogance towards the native inhabitants Don João sets up his court in Rio de Janeiro. Now a woman with a moustache and a limp, Carlota continues her wild and dangerous liaisons in a tropical setting. Don João gets rid of his wife's lovers by granting them land in remote corners of the country.
Though an insufferable racist, Carlota falls in love with a dashing black man, Fernando Leão. Don João buys him off by naming him president of the Bank of Brazil, and in desperation Carlota shoots Fernando's wife to death.
She also sees her dream of becoming Queen of the Amazon evaporate because her husband is afraid to let her have too much power. When the two royals eventually sail back to Portugal, Carlota's son Pedro declares Brazil's independence and becomes first emperor. (...)
Though there are no real heroes or heroines in this earthy chronicle of power and plunder, some of the grandeur of Brazil's first rulers apprears through all their ridiculous clowning and unbridled lusts.
Perfectly in tune with the sarcastic narration, Severo makes a cruel, domineering and ambitious Carlota, who miraculously holds audience sympathy anyway. Nanini and rest of the strong cast stand in her shadow.
Stylized visuals and set designs are a laugh in themselves. Deborah Young, in: Variety, New York, May 20th, 1995
Since 1982 Carla Camurati has worked as an actress in numerous film, theater and television roles, a.o. Pagu by Norma Bengell (1987) and Lamarca by Sérgio Rezende (1993). In 1988 she made her first short films. CARLOTA JOAQUINA is her first feature film.
1988: A Mulher Fatal Encontra o Homem Ideal (Kurzfilm). 1990: Bastidores (Kurzfilm). 1995: Carlota Joaquina, Princesa do Brazil.
© 1997 by International Forum of New Cinema. All rights reserved.