Zézé Gamboa’s sardonic historical drama follows a good-hearted, apolitical con man who, on the eve of Angolan independence in the mid-1970s, pulls off a massive swindle at the expense of the Portuguese colonial administration — and soon after finds himself hailed as a hero of the national liberation struggle. –TIFF
Zézé Gamboa started in Angolan television in May 1974, as a news producer. He went to Europe in 1980 (nine years in Paris and another seven in Belgium) and then he settled in Lisbon, where he found better conditions for work on his films, both in technical and in financial terms; and it was better for his family too.
“Mopiopio, Sopro de Angola (1991) was his first documentary – it was a critique of Angolan society, the shortages and the imbalance of the times expressed through music. Other documentaries followed, among them Desassossego de Pessoa and Dessidência. They picked up the thread of a socio-cultural vision, in an attempt to help towards minimising information shortfalls.
But what Zézé Gamboa likes most is to work with fiction. O Herói tells the story of a soldier, Vitorio, who returns to Luanda having been mutilated by a landmine. He took a long time over this film but it was worthwhile, since it netted him around 15 awards, among them the 2005 award in the best… read more