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Bacurau Bacurau

Kleber Mendonça Filho, Juliano Dornelles / Brazil, France / 2019 / 131 min / English, Portuguese

Flying saucers, duplicitous politicians and undercover assassins. A metaphor for present-day Brazil delivered as a dystopic western starring Sonia Braga and Udo Kier.

festivals, awards Cannes 2019 (Jury Prize), Munich 2019 (Best International Film), Sydney 2019, Toronto 2019, New York 2019


The population of Bacurau is very close-knit; they communicate with one another constantly, like when they announce the visit of the electorally motivated prefect. At which point, a series of curious events begins to unfold: the village has vanished from maps and satellite photos, mysterious bikers begin to appear, the local telephone network is cut off and a massacre takes place on a neighbouring farm. Under the cover of night and with the help of a drone, a group of heavily armed strangers prepare for the orderly yet enjoyable obliteration of Bacurau. But the village inhabitants won’t go down without a fight…

"Bacurau is a nocturnal bird with excellent camouflage when it's on a branch. It's a short, punchy word that evokes the mystery of something that is there, in the darkness, alive but unseen, and that will only be noticed if it wants to be. The same is true of Bacurau the town: it is familiar with darkness; it knows how to lay low; in fact, it prefers not to be noticed. It says so on the highway sign. If you go there, go in peace." (Juliano Dornelles)

Kleber Mendonça Filho
Born in 1968 in Recife, Brazil, Kleber Mendonça Filho continues to live in his hometown. After graduating from college, he worked as a journalist for various Brazilian newspapers. In the 1990s, he made several documentaries and experimental shorts, and in 2012 directed his debut feature, Neighboring Sounds. Aquarius screened in competition at the 2016 Cannes Film Festival.

Juliano Dornelles
Born in 1980 in Recife, Juliano Dornelles has been working in partnership with Kleber Mendonça Filho since 2004, mostly as production designer. He also wrote and directed several shorts.

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