A group of rebellious girls in Brazil, a quartet of black and trans women in the US, a deeply committed citizen in the suburbs of Paris, an Afghan refugee searching for love in San Francisco… here are the cinema releases for December 6th.
“Levante” means “uprising” in Portuguese. A title that couldn’t be more appropriate for this first Brazilian film: there’s an unyielding sense of revolution, all the more stimulating because it’s embodied by a group of happily rebellious girls!
However, the context is not necessarily very cheerful at first. After the disrespectful opening scene, the plot finds us alongside Sofia, a promising 17-year-old volleyball player, who learns she is pregnant before the tournament that could decide her fate. Not wanting this pregnancy, she seeks an illegal abortion (since abortion is criminalized in Brazil, with very rare exceptions) and finds herself the target of fundamentalists, intent on preventing her from doing so. But neither Sophia nor those close to her intend to submit to this blind enthusiasm…
power levante, Specifically, this is collective energy. It is no coincidence that her manager, Laila Hala, chose a sports club as her home: here we train together, united to achieve a common goal… to win! It is no coincidence, either, if the team Sofia plays on is a queer, inclusive, and united team: the convergence of struggles (feminism, anti-racism, the LGBT community, even environmentalists) naturally feeds into this very physical story (the players are photographed in the shower, frontally , over and over again, as the camera provides their bodies with the view that society deprives them of). Sofia’s cuteness aside, this is truly a group photo, as colorful as it is generous!
There is no doubt that there is a dual political issue driving this lively story. Level one reading, literally: Sofia’s story allows Lilla Halla to frankly denounce Brazil’s fascist, if not fanatical, drift (the film was shot during the Bolsonaro era, just before Lula’s election, in October 2022). The second level of reading,[…]
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