It’s 1984. Estela is going through the convoluted stage of adolescence. Sex, love, friendship; everything seems so complicated. Her uncle, Carlos, is her hero, and the trip to California to visit him, her biggest dream. But everything falls apart when he comes back to Brazil looking skinny, weak and sick. Between crisis and discoveries, Estela has to face a reality that will change forever her way of seeing the world.
Containing a hefty dose of 1980s pop culture, California foregrounds the sobering experience of a teen girl torn between the bitter reality of São Paulo and dreams of the Promised Land.
“I wanted to make a film about my generation, how we had our first love and sexual experiences when AIDS was discovered. We also had a special political moment in Brazil with the end of 20 years of military dictatorship. But the film is not about politics or AIDS: It is essentially about a girl becoming a woman. I wanted to explore this bit of time between a girl’s first period and her first sexual experience.” (Marina Person)
Born in 1969 in Brazil. After graduating in Film Studies from the University of São Paulo she started working as an actress and television presenter. In 2007 her directorial debut Person was released, a documentary about her father, cinematographer and director. Califórnia (2015) is her first fiction feature.
2007 Person (doc.)
2015 Califórnia (California)