Screened as part of NZIFF 2006

Cinema, Aspirins and Vultures 2005

Cinema, aspirinas e urubus

Directed by Marcelo Gomes

Modest but lovely road movie set in the vast, arid expanses of the Brazilian Sertão, during World War II, where Johann, a German avoiding the war, sells aspirin. “Very fresh, very charming." — Time Out

Brazil In Portuguese with English subtitles
99 minutes 35mm



Marcelo Gomes
Paulo Caldas
Karim Aïnouz


Mauro Pinheiro


Tomás Alves de Souza


Peter Ketnath
João Miguel
Fabiana Pirro
José Leite


Cannes (Un Certain Regard), London 2005; Rotterdam 2006


“A modest but lovely road movie set at the time of World War II in the vast, arid expanses of the Brazilian Sertão, where Johann, a German avoiding the war, drives a bashed-up old truck to remote villages selling the new wonder-drug aspirin with the help of a projector and some promo shorts. In giving a lift to Ranulpho (João Miguel), he inadvertently picks up an assistant and – this being a movie – a friend; but what lifts the film above cliché is the wit and unsentimental warmth of the script, direction and performances (Miguel is especially captivating), the subtle details of characterisation and the sure sense of place. Very fresh, very charming.” — Geoff Andrew, Time Out 

“Above all this is the story of an odd-couple friendship: and it is credit to the script, the casting and performance of the two leads that a potentially fragile film is given notable emotional depth… Though there is no hint of a gay subtext, Cinema, Aspirins and Vultures proves once again that the best buddy movies are actually love stories in disguise.” — Lee Marshall, Screendaily