A nurse, Mariana (Inês de Medeiros), accompanies Leão (Isaach de Bankolé) to his home on the volcanic islands of Cape Verde after an accident leaves him in a coma—but he goes unrecognized by fellow denizens, leaving Mariana trapped with and eventually entranced by a mysterious community.
With the latest film by the great Portuguese director Pedro Costa winning top prize at the Locarno Film Festival, we revive his masterpiece that obliquely re-imagines Jacques Tourneur’s B-horror classic I Walked with a Zombie on the mythical landscape post-colonial Cape Verde. Transcendent.
…If one combines this struggle with Costa’s uncanny and always evolving talent for composition and color, the overall aspiration resembles both what Godard has called “the definitive by chance” and the fusion of fiction and documentary sought and found by Kiarostami… Casa de Lava may be the film of Costa’s that poses the most constant and furious tug of war in his oeuvre between Hollywood narrative and the portraiture of both places and people, staging an almost epic battle between the two.
Visually, Costa reflects this sense of metaphysical transience through recurring murky, crepuscular, and eerily otherworldly images of volcanic activity, clandestine encounters, and waves violently crashing against the shore.
On the surface, this is a more conventional film than the other film in Costa's oeuvre. But like all Costa films, there is more than meets the eye and what he is doing here is quite subversive- treating the "story" as landscape and the landscape as the actual story.
Costa's debt to to Straub-Huillet is expressed in the form of a pictorially-established ontological materialism; human beings, payed lavish attention, have something like the status of things (though things flung into language). CASA DE LAVA, w/ its debt to I WALKED WITH A ZOMBIE, also centers around spirit, mystery, and the unnameable. There is something of the foggy logic of the weary traveler's undulant dreams.
In land, clay, mud, gravel, rubble, stone. Costa's film is an earthly tale and a cinema personal discover. It acts as Cezanne's still life meeting Cape Verde universe. It is beautiful, it is powerful and it is a film to be seen over and over again. It fills the soul with belief - an emotional journey to cinema's most beautiful places.
Oh my word. What on earth? I mean, eh? What? Is it a 3 star, 5 star, 0 star film? How are you supposed to rate something that's in a genre all of its own? Is it even a movie? Gosh I'm confused.
But but but but but. It is haunting me. Whatever it was has made me nervous. It has quickened my pulse. It has reminded me of sensations I can only recall from reading Heart of Darkness. Arrrrgggghhh. Love? Hate? ... Love!
um Dardenne clássico e mais dotado ,ou talvez um Resnais contemporâneo .
e Inês de Medeiros estará talvez no patamar de uma Karina menos requintada , mas bem mais genuina.
Sinto-me mal por nunca ter dado a devida atenção a Pedro Costa.
Mais um mestre Português... para sempre
Ballade existentielle. Partout les couleurs, la musique. La nuit. La pauvreté. Que cherche cette femme, accrochée aux flancs du volcan île ? Que cherchent les personnages d'Antonioni ? === Existential ballad. Colors, music everywhere, as if to redeem the extreme poverty. The night. What is this woman looking for, in the streets of the island, on the flanks of the volcano? What are Antonioni's characters looking for?