Aquele querido mês de agosto
Portugal/France, 2008, 150 minutes
Sat, Apr 25 / 12:30 / Kabuki / OUR25K
Wed, Apr 29 / 3:00 / Kabuki / OUR29K
Fri, May 1 / 8:45 / Kabuki / OUR01K
When neophyte director Miguel Gomes found himself with neither cast nor financing for his hefty screenplay, he stared impending failure in the face and, giving in to mad artistic impulse, strode headlong towards his location anyways with crew and camera in tow. Set on a quixotic mission to find their film in the midst of the August music festivals that permeate the heart of rural Portugal, Gomes and company shot everything and everyone possible, leaving no stone unturned in their quest for art and story. What emerged is a lengthy and deliberately chaotic hybrid of documentary and fiction which delicately captures the vibrancy of the local community while simultaneously allowing a reworked meta-narrative—centering on the strange relationship between a father, daughter and nephew in a traveling pop band—to quietly creep in to the proceedings. The camera drifts endlessly through picturesque vistas, capturing unrestrained merriment, rural ritual, colorful anecdotes and vivacious characters awash in the vérité spell of his melodious travelogue-cum-joyride. The proceedings are occasionally interrupted by the appearance of the filmmakers, their plight a central fixture of the increasingly bewildering story. People who have once appeared begin to return as fictional characters indicating that Gomes has stumbled upon his cast along the way, their “real” selves having become lost in the current. Inventively risky in execution, Our Beloved Month of August whisks the viewer into a whirlwind, playfully challenging audience expectation and the possibilities inherent in cinematic storytelling, all while gliding along to the provincial Portuguese pop music.
West Coast Premiere.