‘Last of the Samba Wine’ would be a fitting alternative title for this slight, OAP-heavy ensemble drama about the tantrums and tiaras, flirtations and fisticuffs that occur over one evening at a São Paulo dancehall. Little more than an excuse for director Laís Bodanzky to let her camera linger ‘meaningfully’ on the shuffling, spangled shoes of her elderly protagonists, this wannabe-steamy film never manages to generate any dramatic heat because it spreads itself far too thinly across its oversized and mundane cast. Ageing samba chanteuse Elza Soares is on hand to belt out a few numbers, and her thrilling stage presence and soulful vocal delivery make you wish this had been a concert film about her. But, alas, instead we’re forcefed reams of jealous fishwife prattling and lots of loaded reactions shots from all corners of the dancefloor. When events do flare up, they’re either totally improbable (a lithe twentysomething strumpet falling for a greasy, fat lothario because she’s so enraptured by his moves? Really?) or just sickly sweet.
Friday July 2 2010
Cast and crew