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Famous and the Dead
A 16-year-old Bob Dylan fan, known only by his online handle Mr. Tambourine Man, lives with his mother in the remote countryside of Southern Brazil. Devastated by the loss of his father and trapped in a village he dubs the hole in the world, his only contact to the outside world is via the internet.
The arrival of two mysterious figures, the spirit guide Jingle Jangle and her companion Julian, ignites both a fear and a fascination that draws him into their seductive nether world.
Adapted from the novel by Ismeal Caneppele, Esmir Filho s much anticipated debut is a subdued, soulful and dreamily opaque tale that mines the themes of adolescent uncertainty and burgeoning queer sexual desire.
Esmir Filho is one of Brazil best young up and coming film makers. ----Variety
Shades of David Lynch ----San Francisco Film Festival 2010
Esmir Filho is one of Brazil best young up and coming film makers. --Variety
Top customer reviews
One day he encounters Julian (Ismael Caneppele, whose book serves as the basis of the film), a young man who has returned to the town. The boy is attracted to this forlorn-looking guy coping with sad memories of his love "Jingle Jangle" (Tuane Eggers).
Sao Paulo-born director Esmir Filho's feature debut film may remind of Gus Van Sant films and his minimalistic approach to the subject matter. The film is distinguished by its poetic beauty and the touching performance from Henrique Larré as the young boy feeling that he is stranded in this quiet town. Though set in a rural Brazilian community (that sometimes looks like somewhere in Europe), the film's theme is universal.
In spite of these merits, however, the film feels too slow, and the lingering camera shots, stylish as they are, become almost pretentious. The back stories of Julian and Jingle Jangle (as somewhat timeless existence, whose images the boy watches on the internet site) seem too forced to me. After all we don't know much about Jingle Jangle, so why should a 16-year-old boy be interested in her so much?
Beautifully shot and well-acted, "The Famous and the Dead" tells you a story of someone whose life he thinks is going nowhere - a story you heard many times somewhere before.
His work with the young cast is brilliant, showing a deft hand at telling difficult story lines.
A great film, worthy of any art house film collector.