Bil’s rating (out of 5): BBB.
Original title: Beira-Mar
Brazil, 2015. Avante Filmes. Screenplay by Filipe Matzembacher, Marcio Reolon. Cinematography by Joao Gabriel de Queiroz. Produced by Marcio Reolon. Music by Mateus Almada, Felipe Puperi. Production Design by Manuela Falcao. Film Editing by Bruno Carboni, Germano De Oliveira.
Tomaz and Martin are best friends, teenagers about to embark upon adulthood and, in this film, a road trip. Martin finds out that his grandfather has died, taking his friend and journeying beyond the city to a rural town to find his relatives. When they arrive, he and Tomaz set up in his father’s giant country house, inviting other local kids for impromptu parties. Martin is met with cold diffidence by his grandmother and cousin when he follows his father’s instructions and goes in search of documents to settle his grandfather’s estate, neither she nor his cousin having seen Martin’s father in years and openly resentful about it. Meanwhile, Tomaz comes clean about his own burgeoning sexuality and it leads to personal soul-searching in a young man who feels untethered by a family that barely acknowledges his existence. The acting is great and the treatment of youthful sexuality is delicate and sweet, enhanced effectively by charming details: Tomaz’s drawing book as a way of loving his friend, the visual pun of them playing video games looking like they are masturbating on the couch, the sensuality dripping in the air as Martin sees his half-naked cousin sleeping through a window or a guy at the party roams the halls looking for condoms. It’s the kind of thing that’s been done to death and will only appeal to audience members for whom this kind of South American social realism is a new experience; there’s nothing bad to be said about the film, it just won’t be equally interesting to everyone who sees it.