Screened as part of NZIFF 2012
Not all the great filmmakers in Brazil come from Rio or São Paolo. Kleber Mendoça Filho’s drama of life on a sheltered prosperous street adjacent to a poor neighbourhood in Recife is the year’s most striking and compelling movie from a country that produces many. — BG
“Set in a well-to-do apartment complex that’s like a small town to itself, the film vigorously explores the relationships between over a dozen inhabitants, from the building’s aging owner calling the shots from his penthouse, to the comfortable middle class residents lounging in their apartments, to the security guards patrolling the streets.
The characters intermingle in any number of impeccably crafted scenes; issues of class, race and power bubble beneath their interactions, revealing societal holes in Brazil’s current economic boom. With over a dozen featured characters, the outstanding ensemble deserves comparison with the best of Altman, and is topped only by Filho’s tremendous precision with camerawork and dialogue.” — Kevin Lee, rogerbert.com
“This is the kind of thrilling discovery that makes festival-going worthwhile… Filho, shooting in ’scope, makes unexpected and inventive use of space, and his cuts often shift the action in arresting ways, but he handles his meticulously constructed film with great ease. Neighbouring Sounds is the work of someone with an acute eye and ear for the push and pull of modern life, and it makes for genuinely compulsive viewing. Even though you may not be quite sure where things are heading during the circuitous build toward its stunning payoff, you know something’s going to happen.” — Gavin Smith, Film Comment
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