I just arrived home from seeing a free screening of “City of God/Cidade de Deus” (2002) a brazilian film directed by Fernando Meirelles. Some of you may be more familiar with his more recent/ english work The Constant Gardener (2005) and Blindness (2008). City of God is one of my favorite films, but even more exciting is the fact that I had the opportunity to see this film screening here in Grenada. I think this is really an amazing initiative by the Brazilian embassy. Not only are exciting films, which have never been screened in Grenada, being made available to the broad Grenadian public (though publicity about the event has been minimal) but these films are also helping to foster south-south connections. I am not familiar with the other films but I definitely plan on seeing them. For the next few Saturdays there will be screenings at 4:30p at Movie Palace, alll free! (see the schedule here).
City of God, is a beautifully shot and intricate set of short stories, woven together to paint a picture of a moment in time in one community in Brazil. As incredible as the lighting and the framing is, the stories are filled with pain, though one can’t help but laugh at a number of points throughout the film. Life is filled with trials, trials that may not be as violent on a daily basis for most Grenadians, but which still resonate. It is refreshing to see complex characters, not relying heavily on cliques and stereotypes. No one is quite “all bad” or quite “all good”. We are drawn into a world of people that look familiar, that (even in another language) sound a bit familiar too.
I will definitely be heading to the other screenings of Grenada’s 1st Brazilian Film Festival!