MORNING OF SAINT ANTHONY’S DAY (25’, France/Portugal, 2012)

 

Tradition says that on June 13th, Saint Anthony’s Day, lovers must offer small vases of basil, paper carnations and short poems, as a token of their love. Premiered in Cannes Critics Week 2012 and one of the EFA Nominees 2012, this intriguing short film explores a both naive and charming popular belief in the form of an urban performance. The youngsters’ movements remind of “the geometrical and melancholic choreographies of Buster Keaton or Jacques Tati and even the dance pieces of Pina Bausch. A huge St. Anthony’s choreography, a kind of unconscious homage to one of the most popular celebrations in Lisbon.” (João Pedro Rodrigues)

Director: JOÃO PEDRO RODRIGUES

With the support of:

 

Cast: Alexander David, Mariana Sampaio, Miguel Nunes

Screenplay: João Pedro Rodrigues

Cinematography: Rui Poças

Editing: Mariana Gaivão

Sound: Nuno Carvalho

Producer: João Figueiras

Production: Blackmaria / LE FRESNOY



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One of the rising stars of contemporary Portuguese cinema, JOÃO PEDRO RODRIGUES (b. 1966) – a graduate of the Lisbon Film School originally trained as an ornithologist - has directed three mesmerizing feature films that explore the mysteries of human desire and sexuality, placing him at the vanguard of emerging European auteurs. His formally rigorous and poetically elliptical cinema complements the radical filmmaking pioneered by Manoel de Oliveira and Pedro Costa, having at its core an abiding fascination with the ambiguously shifting genders and polymorphous sexuality, and the body as the stage for the dramatic theater of sexual identity, explored in his striking and controversial features O FANTASMA (Venice 2000), ODETE (Cannes 2005) and TO DIE LIKE A MAN (Cannes 2009). He is presently visiting teacher at LE FRESNOY.

 

Semaine de la Critique Cannes 2012/ European Film Awards Nominee of Curtas Vila do Conde 2012

 

“The idea for this film came from a photograph I took with my mobile phone while on my way home in Lisbon, on the first metro in the early hours after the St Anthony’s eve celebrations. That evening I had caught the last metro into the city centre. The train was full. Boys and girls of various urban tribes were full of high spirits.[…] the beginning of a party that went on all night. […] In the early hours, I caught the first train back home at 6.30am. Although it was as full as it had been the night before, there was now absolute silence. The train was not carrying people, but exhausted bodies, half asleep, who woke up as if by instinct when they reached their destination. They got out mechanically, always with the same rhythm and that silence, without saying goodbye, as if each and every one of them were alone. […] Once in the street, they each returned to their homes with the same mechanical walk, in an alcoholic rhythm which seemed in my head to be eminently choreographic.” (JOÃO PEDRO RODRIGUES)

 

“An urban performance played not only by youngsters, but also by the city lights, the shadows and the streets. After a full night party, early morning, as if in a general trance state, ghostlike teenagers, reminding of the hyperrealist sculptures by Ron Mueck, silently invade the empty streets of a sleeping city. They seem to be lost, in search of a home, to which they don’t know to find anymore the once so familiar way.” (Ioana Mischie, BIEFF 2012)

 

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