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World Cup, Season 3, Match 1H: Portugal vs Taiwan vs Georgia vs Morocco

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World Cup, Season 3, Match 1H: Portugal vs Taiwan vs Georgia

#1

Post by joachimt » May 2nd, 2018, 8:07 pm

This is match 1H of the third season of iCM Forum's Film World Cup.

CountryOriginal TitleEnglish TitleYearManagerIMDBICM
PortugalRecordações da Casa AmarelaRecollections of the Yellow House1989Pgonzalezlinklink
TaiwanWo zhe yang guo le yi shengKuei-mei, a Woman1985mjf314linklink
GeorgiaPirosmani1969tarrlinklink
MoroccoLe grand voyageThe Great Journey2004jvvlinklink

ScreenshotsShow
Recordações da Casa Amarela
Image

Wo zhe yang guo le yi sheng
Image

Pirosmani
Image

Le grand voyage
Image
Voting Rules:
- You must watch all 4 films before you vote.
- To vote, rank the 4 films from most favorite to least favorite. (note: you're ranking the individual films, not the countries)

Voting deadline = May 30th
Countdown till deadline

The countries that end at 1st and 2nd place proceed to the next round. The ranking of the match will be decided using these rules:
- Ranked by lowest average ranking.
- In case of a tie between two movies, head-to-head determines the winner (how many people thought A>B and how many thought B>A).
- In case there's still a tie after the previous rule or there is a tie between three or four movies, most #1-votes determines the winner.
- Still a tie? Fewest #4-votes determines the winner.
- Still a tie? The match will have a 3 day extension (except when the tie is only between #3 and #4).
Here's a quick summary of how the tournament worksShow
We start with 48 films from 48 countries. Each country has a manager who determines which movie will be watched. In the first round the countries are divided into 12 groups of 4. From each group the countries that end up at #1 and #2 proceed to the next round. In the 2nd round the 24 remaining countries will be divided into 8 groups of 3. The managers pick a new movie. The winner of each group proceeds to the next round. The final 8 countries compete one-on-one in the quarter finals (with a new movie of course) and so on till the final.
iCM-list of all movies in this World Cup

List of all topics related to the World Cup including previous seasons
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#2

Post by 72allinncallme » May 2nd, 2018, 8:10 pm

1. Le grand voyage
2. Wo zhe yang guo le yi sheng
3. Pirosmani
4. Recordações da Casa Amarela

Close group.

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#3

Post by XxXApathy420XxX » May 2nd, 2018, 9:04 pm

1. Пиросмани [Pirosmani] (1969)
2. Recordações da casa amarela [Recollections of the Yellow House] (1989)
3. Wo zhe yang guo le yi sheng [Kuei-Mei, a Woman] (1985)
4. Le grand voyage [The Great Journey] (2004)
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#4

Post by toro913 » May 2nd, 2018, 9:25 pm

1. Kuei-mei, a woman
.
.
.
2. Pirosmani
3. The Great Journey
4. Recollections of the Yellow House

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#5

Post by Mario Gaborović » May 2nd, 2018, 11:06 pm

1. Pirosmani
2. Recordações da Casa Amarela
3. Le grand voyage
4. Wo zhe yang guo le yi sheng

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#6

Post by Cocoa » May 3rd, 2018, 1:42 am

1. Recordações da Casa Amarela 8/10
2. Le grand voyage 8/10
3. Wo zhe yang guo le yi sheng 5/10
4. Pirosmani 4/10

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#7

Post by Armoreska » May 3rd, 2018, 4:17 am

Each movie has been #1 already. Indeed, there's only movie that has not been ranked in each of the four positions, it's Recordações that's yet to place #3.
Last edited by Armoreska on May 3rd, 2018, 4:18 am, edited 1 time in total.
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viewtopic.php?f=1&t=1434
and "Gordon" Liu Chia-Hui/Liu Chia-Liang and Yuen Woo-ping and "Sammo" Hung Kam-bo

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#8

Post by joachimt » May 3rd, 2018, 6:37 pm

Image Pirosmani: 2.2 (9-6)
Image Recordações da Casa Amarela: 2.6 (7-8)
Image Le grand voyage: 2.6 (7-8)
Image Wo zhe yang guo le yi sheng: 2.6 (7-8)

Image Recordações da Casa Amarela - Image Wo zhe yang guo le yi sheng: 3 - 2
Image Recordações da Casa Amarela - Image Le grand voyage: 3 - 2
Image Wo zhe yang guo le yi sheng - Image Le grand voyage: 2 - 3

Interesting start.
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#9

Post by Smoover » May 6th, 2018, 1:29 pm

1. Wo zhe yang guo le yi sheng 7.5
2. Recordações da Casa Amarela 7.0
3. Pirosmani 5.5
4. Le grand voyage 5.0

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#10

Post by jvv » May 8th, 2018, 6:37 pm

1. Le grand voyage 8/10
2. Recordações da Casa Amarela 7.5/10
3. Wo zhe yang guo le yi sheng 6/10
4. Pirosmani 4.5/10

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#11

Post by burneyfan » May 10th, 2018, 8:21 pm

1. Pirosmani (Georgia)
2. Le grand voyage (Morocco)
3. Wo zhe yang guo le yi sheng (Taiwan)
4. Recordações da Casa Amarela (Portugal)


Very tough group to decide, for the most part. Pirosmani may have had an advantage for me because I got to see it on the big screen a few years ago. All good films. Thanks to Pgonzalez, mjf, tarr, and jvv for sharing them!

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#12

Post by joachimt » May 12th, 2018, 6:54 pm

1. Pirosmani 8/10
2. Le grand voyage 7/10
3. Wo zhe yang guo le yi sheng 7/10
4. Recordações da Casa Amarela 6/10
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#13

Post by joachimt » May 12th, 2018, 6:57 pm

Image Pirosmani: 2.222 (16-11)
Image Le grand voyage: 2.444 (14-13)
Image Wo zhe yang guo le yi sheng: 2.556 (13-14)
Image Recordações da Casa Amarela: 2.778 (11-16)
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#14

Post by beavis » May 13th, 2018, 4:52 pm

1. Wo zhe yang guo le yi sheng - 7.8
2. Recordações da Casa Amarela - 7.5
3. Pirosmani - 7.5
4. Le grand voyage - 6.5

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#15

Post by RBG » May 14th, 2018, 1:57 am

1. Recordações da Casa Amarela -- this is my favorite by monteiro &#9829;&#9829;&#9829;
2. Pirosmani -- beautiful, thx for showing, been meaning to watch it for years &#9829;&#9829;
3. Wo zhe yang guo le yi sheng - perfect mother's day film? or maybe not
4. Le grand voyage - this was fun too. good round
Last edited by RBG on May 14th, 2018, 1:58 am, edited 1 time in total.
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#16

Post by zhangalan » May 15th, 2018, 9:21 am

1. Recordações da Casa Amarela
2. Wo zhe yang guo le yi sheng
3. Pirosmani
4. Le grand voyage

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#17

Post by Mario Gaborović » May 15th, 2018, 9:42 pm

Looks like the most even batch so far. Winners uncertain till the end. :party:

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#18

Post by Muellwind » May 17th, 2018, 9:33 pm

1. Recordações da Casa Amarela
2. Pirosmani
3. Le grand voyage
4. Wo zhe yang guo le yi sheng

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#19

Post by PGonzalez » May 18th, 2018, 12:37 am

I totally didn't buy these three #1 votes in a row :whistling:

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#20

Post by joachimt » May 18th, 2018, 6:40 am

PGonzalez on May 17 2018, 06:37:25 PM wrote:I totally didn't buy these three #1 votes in a row :whistling:
Probably duplicate accounts. :whistling:
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#21

Post by tarr » May 20th, 2018, 10:31 am

1. Pirosmani 8.5/10
2. Wo zhe yang guo le yi sheng 6.5/10
3. Le grand voyage 6.5/10
4. Recordacoes da Casa Amarela 6/10
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#22

Post by Lilarcor » May 20th, 2018, 8:00 pm

1. Pirosmani 8/10

What better way to make a biography about a painter than to make a series of tableaux vivants inspired by his art? Primitivist painter Niko Pirosmani gets a film here that most can only dream of, as it through mise-en-scene captures the Georgian landscape he imagined, and in that process putting the painter into his own paintings by proxy through an actor playing him. Succeeds at the challenging task it sets out to do, creating an absolutely stunning film despite an unsually modest attempt at explaining who the guy was through a narrative. But the look of the film, in his honor, speaks volumes.


2. Wo zhe yang guo le yi sheng 7/10

3. Le grand voyage 6/10

4. Recordacoes da Casa Amarela 5/10

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#23

Post by klaus78 » May 21st, 2018, 2:22 pm

1. Recordações da Casa Amarela (Portugal) 8/10
2. Pirosmani (Georgia) 8/10
3. Wo zhe yang guo le yi sheng (Taiwan) 7/10
4. Le grand voyage (Morocco) 6/10
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#24

Post by hurluberlu » May 21st, 2018, 4:54 pm

1. Pirosmani (Georgia) 8/10
2. Recordações da Casa Amarela (Portugal) 7/10
3. Wo zhe yang guo le yi sheng (Taiwan) 5+/10
4. Le grand voyage (Morocco) 5-/10
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#25

Post by joachimt » May 21st, 2018, 6:25 pm

Morocco was doing well during the first 9 votes, but has been going down ever since.

Image Pirosmani: 2.059 (33-18)
Image Recordações da Casa Amarela: 2.412 (27-24)
Image Wo zhe yang guo le yi sheng: 2.529 (25-26)
Image Le grand voyage: 3 (17-34)
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#26

Post by Armoreska » May 21st, 2018, 6:29 pm

Pirosmani 7 - rewatch in Georgian (as opposed to the russian dub). substantial improvement, originally it was ranked 4th. so it partially saved this round.
Wo zhe yang guo le yi sheng 6-
Le grand voyage 5-
Recordacoes da Casa Amarela 4+
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currently working towards a vegan/low waste world + thru such film lists (besides TV): 2010s bests, RW Fassbinder, Luis Bunuel, Yasujiro Ozu, Eric Rohmer, Visual Effects nominees, kid-related stuff, great animes (mini-serie or feature), very 80s movies, 17+ sci-fi lists on watchlist, ENVIRO, remarkable Silent Films and Pre-Code (exploring 1925 atm) and every shorts and docu list I'm aware of and
viewtopic.php?f=1&t=1434
and "Gordon" Liu Chia-Hui/Liu Chia-Liang and Yuen Woo-ping and "Sammo" Hung Kam-bo

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#27

Post by joachimt » May 21st, 2018, 7:52 pm

Armoreska on May 21 2018, 12:29:06 PM wrote:Pirosmani 7 - rewatch in Georgian (as opposed to the russian dub). substantial improvement, originally it was ranked 4th. so it partially saved this round.
Do you think it also matters for people who rely on subs? I don't even know which dub I watched.
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#28

Post by Armoreska » May 21st, 2018, 8:16 pm

joachimt on May 21 2018, 01:52:54 PM wrote:
Armoreska on May 21 2018, 12:29:06 PM wrote:Pirosmani 7 - rewatch in Georgian (as opposed to the russian dub). substantial improvement, originally it was ranked 4th. so it partially saved this round.
Do you think it also matters for people who rely on subs? I don't even know which dub I watched.
well it didn't improve as much as it did just because of a better audio, but certainly if whoever's yet to watch doesn't know russian, then they oughta make sure they have the original version.

I guess a lot of people wouldn't care. Georgian sounds very different from Russian, but similar to Farsi and Arabic
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currently working towards a vegan/low waste world + thru such film lists (besides TV): 2010s bests, RW Fassbinder, Luis Bunuel, Yasujiro Ozu, Eric Rohmer, Visual Effects nominees, kid-related stuff, great animes (mini-serie or feature), very 80s movies, 17+ sci-fi lists on watchlist, ENVIRO, remarkable Silent Films and Pre-Code (exploring 1925 atm) and every shorts and docu list I'm aware of and
viewtopic.php?f=1&t=1434
and "Gordon" Liu Chia-Hui/Liu Chia-Liang and Yuen Woo-ping and "Sammo" Hung Kam-bo

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#29

Post by weirdboy » May 22nd, 2018, 5:59 am

1. Pirosmani - 1969 - Giorgi Shengelaia
2. Le grand voyage (The Great Journey) - 2004 - ismael Ferroukhi
3. Wo zhe yang guo le yi sheng (Kuei-mei, a Woman) - 1985 - Yi Chang
4. Recordações da Casa Amarela (Recollections of the Yellow House) - 1989 - Joao Cesar Monteiro

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#30

Post by Renegade » May 22nd, 2018, 11:31 pm

1. Wo zhe yang guo le yi sheng
2. Pirosmani
3. Le grand voyage
4. Recordações da Casa Amarela

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#31

Post by sacmersault » May 23rd, 2018, 5:59 am

1. Pirosmani (Georgia)
A beautiful film with such precise photography to mimic the sense of a painting. This was one of those jewels that I would never have discovered on my own and never would have seen if it wasn't for things like the WC. Love it

2. Wo zhe yang guo le yi sheng (Taiwan)
Very good film, but got wayyyyyy too melodramatic towards the end

3. Le grand voyage (Morocco)
Ok film. It's totally missing the transcendence of a great road film. The plot is super thin for most of the 3/4 of the film. It is very superficial and only works in certain situations.

4. Recordacoes da Casa Amarela (Portugal)
Honestly one of the most "I'm really not missing something people are seeing" movies I've seen in a long time. This was at best mediocre for me, at worst terrible. Maybe something got lost in translation and I'm missing it.
Last edited by sacmersault on May 23rd, 2018, 5:59 am, edited 1 time in total.

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#32

Post by sacmersault » May 23rd, 2018, 6:02 am

Ok. I'm not going to change my rankings, but I would really appreciate if someone that liked Recordacoes de Casa Amarelha can tell me what is good about it. I'm obviously missing something and would like to appreciate it better. I see it won two awards at a big film festival and it's on the list of best Portuguese films, so obviously I'm missing something.

Can someone help?

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#33

Post by edward5 » May 23rd, 2018, 6:25 am

1. الرحلة الكبرى Le grand voyage 7/10
2. &#4324;&#4312;&#4320;&#4317;&#4321;&#4315;&#4304;&#4316;&#4312; Pirosmani 6/10
3. &#25105;&#36889;&#27171;&#36942;&#20102;&#19968;&#29983; Wo zhe yang guo le yi sheng 6/10
4. Recordações da Casa Amarela 5/10


Le grand voyage is mediocre, and the rest are disappointed, not a good round for me.

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#34

Post by joachimt » May 23rd, 2018, 6:49 am

Image Pirosmani: 1.909 (46-20)
Image Wo zhe yang guo le yi sheng: 2.455 (34-32)
Image Recordações da Casa Amarela: 2.773 (27-39)
Image Le grand voyage: 2.864 (25-41)

Pirosmani is doing really well. Gap between #2 and #3 is getting bigger.
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#35

Post by RBG » May 23rd, 2018, 7:25 am

sacmersault on May 23 2018, 12:02:17 AM wrote:Ok. I'm not going to change my rankings, but I would really appreciate if someone that liked Recordacoes de Casa Amarelha can tell me what is good about it. I'm obviously missing something and would like to appreciate it better. I see it won two awards at a big film festival and it's on the list of best Portuguese films, so obviously I'm missing something.

Can someone help?
well i think you have to like monteiro's character -- he's sort of a comi-tragic buster keaton figure for me
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#36

Post by sacmersault » May 23rd, 2018, 4:26 pm

RBG on May 23 2018, 01:25:54 AM wrote:
sacmersault on May 23 2018, 12:02:17 AM wrote:Ok. I'm not going to change my rankings, but I would really appreciate if someone that liked Recordacoes de Casa Amarelha can tell me what is good about it. I'm obviously missing something and would like to appreciate it better. I see it won two awards at a big film festival and it's on the list of best Portuguese films, so obviously I'm missing something.

Can someone help?
well i think you have to like monteiro's character -- he's sort of a comi-tragic buster keaton figure for me
Ohhh I didn't know he was a comic character in Portugal. I thought it was a stand-alone film with that character.

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#37

Post by RBG » May 23rd, 2018, 6:15 pm

yeah this was the first film he made featuring the character of joão de deus/john of god, followed by A Comédia de Deus/god's comedy (1995), As Bodas de Deus/god's wedding (1999) and finally Vai~E~Vem/come and go (2003) which ends with the character's death (here called joão vuvu/quarrelsome john). monteiro died of cancer a few months later. it was very moving. he made other great films too of course

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Last edited by RBG on May 23rd, 2018, 6:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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#38

Post by sacmersault » May 23rd, 2018, 7:25 pm

RBG on May 23 2018, 12:15:42 PM wrote:yeah this was the first film he made featuring the character of joão de deus/john of god, followed by A Comédia de Deus/god's comedy (1995), As Bodas de Deus/god's wedding (1999) and finally Vai~E~Vem/come and go (2003) which ends with the character's death (here called joão vuvu/quarrelsome john). monteiro died of cancer a few months later. it was very moving. he made other great films too of course

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This makes a bit more sense. A sort of Jerry Lewis in America, Cantinflas in Mexico, Mr. Hulot in France, etc...and some of them didn't always translate to other cultures.

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#39

Post by PGonzalez » May 23rd, 2018, 7:59 pm

sacmersault on wrote:This makes a bit more sense. A sort of Jerry Lewis in America, Cantinflas in Mexico, Mr. Hulot in France, etc...and some of them didn't always translate to other cultures.
To add a bit to what RBG said, his 'comedy' was marked by a heavy cynicism regarding the 'Portuguese myth'. He showed people a very grotesque picture of themselves, which was quite honest but often disregarded, and his confrontational approach meant that the general audience wasn't very respectful towards his work. While Manoel de Oliveira, for example, was always immensely respected by everyone (even if they didn't see his films), João César Monteiro was a very disdained personality. In fact, he is mostly remembered today for a very famous outburst ("I want the Portuguese audiences to go fuck themselves").

I find this film remarkable due to the way he is capable of combining his extreme (and extremely funny) sarcasm and a great tenderness. One of the themes I respond the most to (family) is very subtly explored here, in a way I find akin to "Amarcord", for example, but much stronger. I always read the various episodes of the film as being projections from his childhood, adolescence and adult years, mixed together without any transition to fully explore the creation of his persona (and that of the Portuguese collective identity). I've actually been meaning to translate a very good analysis by João Bénard da Costa, but working during the day and studying at night hasn't left me with a lot of time available. I'll try to do it now :)

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#40

Post by PGonzalez » May 23rd, 2018, 9:29 pm

Recollections of the Yellow House. Even those who haven’t read a lot immediately remember Dostoevsky and Recollections of the House of the Dead [in Portuguese, The House of the Dead in English]. We know the journey won’t be nice. Yellow House why? The following subtitle – we are still plunged into the blackest black – explains: “In my hometown they used to call yellow house to the house where the inmates were kept. Sometimes, while playing in the street, we, children, threw stealthy looks to the dark and silent bars of the high windows and, with a choked heart, muttered: ‘Poor things’…”

The titles roll. We hear a flute, weird sounds, screams. The yellow house isn’t a prison. It’s a an asylum. João de Deus [John of God] is already talking from there, when he recites in off a text from Céline (Mort à Crédit). But light reaches the screen, and what begins is a flashback. Slow travelling over Lisbon, shot from the Tejo, uncovering the most beautiful part of town, from Terreiro do Paço to the Madre de Deus. Old houses? As Dona Violeta will correct, “baroque, Mr. João. This house belonged to marquises, princes of Portugal”. No-one’s playing, much less the director. During the film, countless times, we dive into these neighborhoods, streets, squares and alleys. All so strange, all so unknown. Lisbon has a face and a reverse. We see the face from the river, and it’s nice for the poets. We see the reverse in land, and it’s nice for the painters. The city is extremely secretive. Those who see faces don’t see hearts. Beyond the facades begin the surprises. Let the tourist have the ville blanche. Those who die here know how everything is dark. So dark that, in the end – when João de Deus reincarnates into Nosferatu – João César didn’t need any trick to frame it into an expressionist décor. Murnau – not to speak of Robert Wiene – needed studios and great set decorators. João César only needed to set the camera, rigourously frame the picture, and wait for the light. Miracles do happen. The poster for the film – a reproduction of Grosz’s painting John der Frauenmörder, painted in 1918 – wasn’t a model for the film. Instead, it looks like its copy. The arts, sometimes, have singular coincidences.

The river’s travelling doesn’t end by chance at Madre de Deus. It’s also not by chance that the following sequence takes place in a chapel, dedicated to Our Lady, and that the first image we see is of Our Lady. We even see Our Lady before we see João de Deus. That’s because Recollections of the Yellow House is also – I’d say is especially – a film about the Mother. The Mother is the central theme in these Recollections. Thus, the ending of the travelling raccords with the baroque image of Our Lady. A close-up, slightly in contre-plongée. Cut and counter-shot. The Virgin is being looked at by João de Deus, who we knew by voice (the long monologue on bedbugs) but only now do we know him in the flesh. He’s sitting in the dark of the “ancestral, silent and empty” church. He gets up slowly and goes away, stopping by the holy water and the donations box. After a lot of words, a lot of silence. It’s possible that the spectator taken by the provocation – or the truculence – of the verb open the ears more than the eyes. That will be our fault, not the director’s. One doesn’t begin a film in a church by chance. We’ll find out why later on.

Later on. After the sequence at the café with Pom-Pom and Mimi, that is, with the dog and the whore. João de Deus hasn’t opened his mouth during the neighborhood conversation, supposedly realist (they even talk about ”our Benfica”). Narrow-minded people don’t see anything but fado and football. But when João de Deus leaves, Mimi, reflected in a big oval mirror, looks at him and stands looking at him for a long time without him looking back. Later on she’ll say “I see him almost every day on the street or in the café. I noticed you because you always keep to yourself. You don’t talk to anyone.”. “I do, but one doesn’t notice it”. In the mirror shot we had the first sign of attention without words. She, who’ll later say, translating from the Bohème, “call me Mimi”, is the first person in the film who notices João de Deus, protecting him maternally (the oval mirror), recurring image in the films of César Monteiro.

And here I’ll make a cinephile parenthesis. If the most attentive critics discovered it (it’s in the film the rhyme between these Recollections and Who Waits for the Deceased's Shoes Dies Barefoot, João César Monteiro’s first film), I didn’t find anywhere a reference to the continuity of the 1975 film What Will I Do with This Sword? Nosferatu, cited in the two works? Something else. Mimi is the twin sister of that other Cais do Sodré whore that confessed after Butterfly. Sons of her passes for an insult. We have forgotten the Gospels. These enter before the others in the Kingdoms of Heaven.

João de Deus comes out of the café. And the discreet allusion to the mother comes out in the soundtrack, when we start hearing Vivaldi’s Stabat Mater. There was a cut and João de Deus, shot in plongée, stops at the hall of an eighteenth century house, covered in azulejos and with a beautiful floor. The shot has the length and the solenity to be sacral. It’s the entrance to a temple. “Eia, Mater fons amoris / Me sentire vim doloris / Fac ut tecum lugeam”, it is sung, and no-one is playing with words or music. João de Deus starts ascending the stairs – big stone stairs – in a close ensemble shot. The camera moves from left to right and we see the hall. In the right, an angel with a torch and at his feet a woman sweeps the floor with a yellow soap bar. Further away, in the left, a curtain with Portugal’s coat of arms. Vivaldi keeps playing and all the signs are aligned for the sacral staging. One only has to say it. The camera tracks back and frames João de Deus, standing, with his back turned to us, on the top of the stairs, far from the woman. And then he says twice: ‘Mother, Mother’.
The dialogue between the two is curt and dry (on the son’s part). João de Deus went there to ask her mother for money, all the money his mother has. She gives it to him. Scabrous situation, abject, etc.? Those who stay at that don’t have eyes, heart or taste. He’s looking at the most beautiful of Pietás. Quis est homo, qui non fleret?

The same sacredness presides over the staging of Mimi’s encounter with João de Deus at the bar: the vaneyckian aureole and no ‘stuff’ [in Portuguese, coiso, which sounds like coito, coitus, and is often used as such]. It presides, afterwards, over the via crucis of the dog kennel (“I’m with you”) or the lunch of cabidela, with that sublime ending (“more general light, if possible”) over the closeup of Mimi’s hands saying: “I shall only have, then, to burry both hands in the net to feel everything that is born from it”.

Until João de Deus’s birthday night arrives. He only thinks about the girl’s clarinet. But, when she finally plays it (if I’m not mistaken it’s Mozart’s K.622), it starts to rain and everyone runs away. The girl, the clarinet and Mozart stay alone. But during the whole ‘party’, Mimi was always following João de Deus from afar. And it’s through the breath of Mozart (like the gushing gargoyles of the fountains) that we reach the closeup of Mimi, inside the house. A “louisebrrokian shot” (João César Monteiro’s words). And she says, offering herself: “it’s my birthday present”. Mozart gives way to Schubert. First the cello, then the violin, finally the piano. She takes off her socks. The camera frames João de Deus against the wall, sitting on his room’s bed. João de Deus, tiny, on the left. Over the bed, the boots from Stroheim’s picture. And while the Trio continues, the camera rises very slowly, dropping the protagonist to show us Stroheim in full body, dressed like a cavalry officer. We hear sighs off screen and finally the silence. “What?”, Mimi asks off screen. And that’s when we know, through João de Deus’s direct response, that Mimi’s a mother. Again, the Mother of God [Mãe de Deus].

In the following sequence, she has already dies. Then, there’s the visit to her room, so sacral and so sacrilegious as the visit to the Madre [Mother/ Madre de Deus/ Mother of God. There’s a great deal of play on words, both in the film and in this analysis, that’s very hard to translate]. The doll is the substitution figure that Miss Julieta can’t be.

Lost all the mothers, all the women, João de Deus assumes himself as a pariah (fabulous sequence in the garden bench, with the description of the sequence of Madre de Deus/ Mother of God’s death) and then he assumes himself as that Stroheim who had witnessed his only night of love. It’s Stroheim who dominates a Lisbon in ruins, where the Carmo of the Tanhäuser rhymes with a gutted Chiado.
And, in the circular race at the asylum, João de Deus covers the path that connects Lívio (Luís Miguel Cintra) to the director, who had directed him twenty years earlier, on the Shoes. “It had never occurred to me how eternity could be so bitter”. “What have you done all these years?”. “I’ve been here waiting for you.”. “Waiting for me?”.

The greatest of the theater men of the 60s generation and the biggest of the cinema men of the same generation meet again, no longer being just one. They invented space to kill time and they invented time to dominate space. Good sense prevailed. God/Deus will give them life. And the most moving shot about a generation is the one of Luís Miguel Cintra, seeing João de Deus going away, with a movement from his throat, as he was gulping.
Twenty years we have lived in the house of the dead, or in the yellow house. João César Monteiro/ João de Deus resurrected to tell it to us all. It’s a “Lusitanian comedy”. Is it a Portuguese tragedy? Is it a genre film? As João de Deus answered Henrique Viana, who asked him if The Death of Empedocles (Hölderlin’s, or Straub’s?) belongs to the crime genre, his exact answer is: “No! It’s heavenly”. That’s the film’s genre.

Alone against the stars, like in the end of Silvestre, this is a sacred film. It’s also – once again – a great romantic film. Imaginations have been worn out trying to think of kinships. Read Cesário [Cesário Verde], the one from Sentimento de um Ocidental (The Feeling of a Westerner): “Human Pain, like a baleful sea,/ Seeks vast horizons for its bitter tides!” [translation: Richard Zenith]. It’s possible to journey through these Recollections with Cesário’s poem as a flashlight. Whoever gets disoriented, can orient himself with it. To reach the same verse and the same conclusion. Dreyer’s sheet and Murnau’s shadow. My sons, these are the films that, setting down on Earth, will bring clarity to your lives. To all lives.



JOÃO BÉNARD DA COSTA (The translation was a bit rushed, please tell me if you find anything wrong. Also, are the accents displaying correctly?)
Last edited by PGonzalez on May 23rd, 2018, 9:30 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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