By William Wolf

BACURAU  Send This Review to a Friend

There is excitement and bonding in “Bacurau,” written and directed by Kleber Mendonça Filho and Juliano Dornelles and set in an imaginary town deep in Brazil and projected into the future. A community is threatened by armed tourists linked to politicians and the marauders try to take over a village. But the locals cleverly come together to fight the assailants, and the result is a film exalting in what people can accomplish when unified and brave.

“Bacurau,” showcased at the 2019 New York Film Festival and now in commercial release, comes across as an allegory indicating how a local politico uses others in hoping to wipe out people who stand in the way and the film becomes awash in violence and blood.

A group of armed American tourists are encouraged to use villagers for target practice. Behind them, as it turns out, is a corrupt mayor, Tony, Jr. (Thardelly Lima, who has his own devious reasons for wanting to seize control.

The film has a colorful aggregation of characters, as for example, Teresa (Bárbara Colen), who has returned to the village for the funeral of her grandmother. There is also the venerable Sônja Braga in the role of a drunken doctor.

Once we learn the general set up, the film swings into bloody action as the battle rages with the villagers uniting to fight for their existence. “Bacurau” is a visionary film with ideas to express amid the chaos. A Kino Lorber release. Reviewd March 6, 2020.


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