Who Needs Hollywood?

Translating dicionario as book does the audience a disservice, for it does not prepare us for the film's structure, which takes us through the entire alphabet, with each letter as the beginning of a word describing an aspect of the deteriorating relationship. (Not only that, but some letters are used for more than one word!) One may argue that the film is an honest effort to remove the glitz from romantic comedy, but I say better glitz than dull characters. The one ray of light is another fine performance from Gloria Pires, the priest-condemning woman from O Quatrilho, who plays the lead character's disillusioned-but-wiser-for-it ex-wife. If there were a Best Actress award in this festival, she would have no challengers.

Word is that there will be one award, the "Public Prize," to be chosen from ballots that will be distributed at each screening. In addition, the producers of the festival will convene a general audience discussion after each film Friday, Saturday, and Sunday night.

All in all, the first Brazilian Film Festival offers some rewarding material, a significant number of female directors, and a commendable overriding purpose: to bring together a body of work that illustrates a flurry of activity in a corner of the film world that most of us know very little about.

The first Brazilian Film Festival commences this Friday, May 30, and runs through Sunday, June 8, at the Bill Cosford Cinema on the campus of the University of Miami in Coral Gables. Admission is $5 per screening ($3 for students). See "Calendar Listings" for more information, or call 860-2940.

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