Film Colossal Youth
posted by December 10 at 16:27 PMon
The title may put you in mind of a reality TV show about obese teens (I think the translation is a little off), but maybe that’s OK—this difficult Portuguese movie is about the trauma of modern urban existence, thousands of miles and multiple chemicals away from traditional lifestyles.
The final entry in Pedro Costa’s Vanda series finds Ventura, a statuesque older man from the Fountaínhas slum, scouting a unit in a new government housing project for his disparate “children,” including the methadone-dependent Vanda from the previous films. The shots are studiously static and the narrative is hard to follow, but the characters—all played by nonprofessional actors from the community—are obstinate and fascinating. Ultimately, the string that binds the sprawling, 155-minute film is not the ennobling lighting and pretty digital cinematography, but an evocative letter home to Cape Verde that one resident has committed to heart, like a poem or a prayer. (ANNIE WAGNER)
Colossal Youth, which just this weekend won the Los Angeles Film Critics award for 2007’s best independent/experimental film, gets two screenings in Seattle on Wednesday at Northwest Film Forum. (Tonight there are two screenings of In Vanda’s Room, the second film in the series, which I haven’t seen yet.)