Archive for February 12th, 2018

by Jared Dec

Full disclosure, one reason I am reviewing this film is because Allan mentioned it once as a film that might have made it into the book if he had access to a copy with English subtitles. I have some basic knowledge of Portuguese, and between that, Google translate, a dictionary, and some help from a fellow Wonders denizen, I have managed to do a good enough translation that one can follow the plot of the film. The process took about 5 hours over the course of two days and I am in no way fluent in or a native speaker of Portuguese, so the translation is a bit iffy all-around. However, I will be including my attempted subtitles with this review and a link to the film on youtube if you want to see a film that has been rarely seen outside its native country. I beseech all cinema buffs who are also speakers of multiple languages to try translating films that have yet to be translated as it is only through the effort of often unpaid translations (much like my own here) that we discover the true breadth of cinema outside the English-speaking world. Preaching over, now onto the review.

Maria do Mar – José Leitão de Barros

(Portugal 1930 77m)

p José Leitão de Barros d José Leitão de Barros w José Leitão de Barros, António Lopes Ribeiro ph Manuel Luís Vieira, Salazar Dinis ed José Leitão de Barros int Norberto Lopes

Rosa Maria (Maria do Mar), Oliveira Martins (Manuel), Adelina Abranches (Aunt Aurélia, Ihlda), Alves da Cunha (Captain Falacha), Perpétua dos Santos (Falacha’s wife), Horta e Costa (The “ Turkey”), António Duarte (Lacraio), Maria Leo (Maria’s friend), Mário Duarte (The doctor), Celestino Pedroso (The colonel), Rafael Alves (The official)


In the swirls of the bay…


José Leitão de Barros is not a name you will find in many film histories. In fact, aside from works made after the end of the Fascist regime in 1974, one can scarcely find mention anywhere of the cinema of Portugal. For the duration of the Fascist regime (1933-1974), essentially all Portuguese films were forced to become in some way mouthpieces for the regime and as a result few are remembered. However there was a brief period before the Fascist regime when José Leitão de Barros defined the cinema of his native country as much as Eisenstein and Pudvokin defined Soviet cinema of the same time. Not only did Leitão de Barros direct Portugal’s first sound film A Severa (1931), but the year prior he made what many Portuguese cineastes consider the first true masterpiece of Portuguese cinema, Maria do Mar (1930). (more…)

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by Sam Juliano

Four and a half months of picture book madness ends today when the American Library Association announces the annual winners at their mid-Winter meeting in Denver at 10:00 A.M. MT.  I will revise this post accordingly at around 12:00 noon with the identity of the Caldecott finalists.  I want to thank all those who visited the reviews, placed comments and addressed the project in similar terms on social media.  James Clark was miraculous, commenting on every single post.  I can never thank him enough for his stunning insights, support and friendship.  Laurie Buchanan championed the series relentlessly on FB and commented regularly. She has been a beacon of lights for this project each and every year since it launched five years ago.  Patricia Hamilton is another who has been unbelievable, sharing on FB and providing comments and like throughout.  Can never thank her enough!  Thank you exceedingly to Rick Chinigo, Brian Wilson, Ed Spicer, Jamie Peeps Hogan, Wendy Wahman, Duane Porter, Celeste Fenster, Kimbrap, Peter M., Frank Gallo, Raul Colon, Barabra McClintock, Wendell Minor, Florence Friedman Minor, Sergio Ruzzier, Matthew Cordell, Karen R., John Grant, John R., Francy Stoller, Dennis Polifroni, Tim McCoy, Pat Perry, Fiona Robinson, Roberta Rivera, Steve Mazzone, Maxine Grgurev, Bernice Weise, Paula P, Bart Talamini, Helen Frost, John Greco, Robert Hornak, Melanie Juliano, Samuel Juliano, Lucille Juliano and a number of others for their terrific comments and FB likes.  Thank you to the authors and illustrators who shares the 41 posts on FB.  Two-thirds of that total were negotiated to that end, and it was most heartening.

Lucille and I saw the play “Farinelli and the King” at the David Belasco Theatre on Tuesday evening.  We were thrilled to meet and chat with Oscar winning actor Mark Rylance afterward at the stage door.  The play was a treasure. (more…)

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