Fiction, feature film, 35 mm, black-and-white, 2195 meters, 80 minutes.
Salvador, Bahia, 1961.
Production Company: Iglu Films.
Distribution: Horus Films.
Producers: Rex Schindler and Braga Neto.
Associate Producer: David Singer.
Production Manager: José Telles de Magalhães.
Executive Producer: Roberto Pires.
Director: Glauber Rocha.
Assistant Directors: Álvaro Guimarães and Waldemar Lima.
Story: Glauber Rocha.
Original Idea: Luiz Paulino dos Santos.
Scriptwriters: Glauber Rocha and José Telles de Magalhães.
Dialogues: Glauber Rocha and Luiz Paulino dos Santos.
Director of Photography: Tony Rabatony.
Editor: Nelson Pereira dos Santos.
Title Designer: Calazans Neto.
Music: Washington Bruno (Canjiquinha): Samba de roda and Capoeira; Batatinha: Samba.
Locations: Praia do Buraquinho, Itapoã, Vila Flamengo (Salvador, Bahia).
Awards: First Movie Award (XIII International Festival of Cinema of Karlovy Vary, Czech Republic, 1962).
Cast: Antônio Sampaio, Luiza Maranhão, Lucy Carvalho, Aldo Teixeira, Lídio Cirillo dos Santos, Rosalvo Plínio, Alair Liguori, Antonio Carlos dos Santos, d. Zezé, Flora Vasconcelos, Jota Luna, Hélio Moreno Lima, Francisco dos Santos Brito. Special participation in candomblé rituals: D. Hilda; Samba de roda and Capoeira: D. Zezé, Adinora, Arnon, Sabá; Candomblé instructor: Hélio de Oliveira.
In a village of xaréu (Kingfish) fishermen, whose ancestors came as slaves from Africa, persist old mystic cults connected to candomblé. The arrival of Firmino, a former inhabitant who moved to Salvador, running away from poverty, transforms the peaceable panorama of the place, and polarizes tensions. Firmino is attracted to Quota, but he is not able to forget Naína who, on her part, likes Aruã. Firmino orders dispatch against Aruã, that isn’t attained, in opposite to the village that sees the cut net, impeding the fishing. Firmino stirs up the fishermen to revolt against the owner of the net, coming to destroy it. Policemen arrive at the village to control the equipment. In his fight against the exploration, Firmino argues against the master, mediator between the fishermen and the owner of the net. A fisherman convinces Aruã of fishing without the net, since his chastity would make him a protected man of Iemanjá. The fishermen are successful in their piecework, under the leadership of Aruã. Naína reveals her impossible love for Aruã to an old black woman. In his defeat against mysticism, Firmino convinces Quota of taking away Aruã’s virginity, and consequently breaking the religious enchantment that makes him a protected man of Iemanjá. Aruã takes the bait. A storm announces the “barravento”, the violent moment. The fishermen leave for the sea, two of them die, Vicente and Chico. Firmino denounces Aruã’s loss of chastity. The Master reneges. The dead bodies are guarded, and Naína accepts to make the ritual, so she can marry Aruã. He promises the marriage, but before he decides to leave for the city to work and to earn money for the purchase of a new net. In the same place where Firmino arrived at the village, Aruã leaves for the city.
“The history of Barravento is the history of a group of poor fishermen living in a region in Bahia. One of them, who already lived in the city, tries to free them from their old faith and from slavery, using the most diabolic methods. The presence of the sea, considered as a divinity, the music, the dance, the ceremonies and ritual sacrifices are the essential elements of this narrative (...).”
(Barravento, Jean de Baroncelli, Le Monde, Paris, 27/04/70)
“Another great characteristic of great importance of Barravento is its generosity. The director profoundly loves his characters and he includes them in a large sensual movement, in a fight that embraces work, sex, nature. G. Rocha is able to communicate a furious love for life. This love is life, it is exceptional in Brazilian cinema (...)”
Jean-Claude Bernardet , Última Hora, Página Popular da Cultura (20/07/63).
BARRAVENTO TO BE SHOWN IN THE VENICE FILM FESTIVAL 2003
Saturday, September 6, 2003
What’s the mystery of this film in black-and-white, more than 40 years old, whose director died more than 20 years ago, that he is able, in the middle of a monstrous festival like Venice, to attract more than thousand people in the hugest cinema of the festival? The secret reveals itself when the name Glauber Rocha appears in the credits and the audience applauds. The mysticism continues intact and Glauber, abroad, still is the synonym for vanguard cinema. His first feature film, Barravento, of 1961, was shown by means of a bad copy for a very interested audience that applauded at the end. The film closed the Venice Critics' Week and deserved a commentary by the critic Anton Giulio Mancino in the bulletin Film Daily: “To see Barravento, today, does not mean to look back to the past, but to the future… It is already a mature example for a style that exceeds the limits between documentary and fiction, narration and ethnographic analysis, fabulation and political manifesto.”
LUIZ ZANIN ORICCHIO Special envoy of the Journal “O Estado de S.Paulo” in the Venice Festival