Val is the kind of live-in housekeeper who, in line with the Brazilian social tradition, has subjected her most intimate expectations and desires to her work. She serves her wealthy São Paulo employers day in and day out while lovingly nannying their teenage son although having a neglected daughter of her own. One day, Val’s daughter Jessica arrives to take the college entrance exams and make peace with her mother. Jessica’s confident presence upsets the strict balance of power in the household.
While probing into the complex relationship between a mother and the daughter she has abandoned the amazingly dynamic and comic family drama provides an incisive and uncompromising social commentary.
“The Second Mother is a film about a set of social strictures which have been in place in Brazilian culture since colonial times, and which continue to affect the country’s emotional architecture to this very day.” (Martti Helde)
Born in 1964 in São Paulo, Brazil. After studying filmmaking at the University of São Paulo Muylaert became a film critic and wrote scripts for TV programs. In the 90s she directed a series of short films and in 2002 made Durval Discos, her first feature that won a number of festival awards. The Second Mother is her fourth and internationally most successful feature.
1995 A Origem dos Bebês Segundo Kiki Cavalcanti (short)
2002 Durval Discos (Durval Records)
2009 É Proibido Fumar (Smoke Gets in Your Eyes)
2012 Chamada a Cobrar (Collect Call)
2014 Que Horas Ela Volta? (The Second Mother)