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WAITING FOR THE CARNIVAL (2019, BRA) Movie review, plot, trailer

Another impressive documentary is coming to us from Brazil. Experienced filmmaker Marcelo Gomes has ventured into the northeastern Brazilian province of Pernambuco. The director himself is also a narrator here who remembers how as a child decades ago he knew how to travel to these areas with his father as a public servant. In search of landscapes he somehow remembers in his childhood from the fog, he arrived in a city that follows the epithet of the Brazilian capital of jeans. And indeed, from start to finish, everything here seems surreal because Toritama is a place of 45, 50 thousand inhabitants in which 20 million jeans are produced annually, which is 20 percent of the total Brazilian production of popular pants. Absolutely everyone here either works in jeans factories or makes this favorite garment at home.

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They work from morning to night, they seem to earn even solidly for Brazilian opportunities, and they don’t look particularly dissatisfied. At least not those who work in home crafts and explain how they are paid by performance, and we quickly realize that this place is a real microcosm of the worst form of capitalism. And best of all, almost all of these people don’t even realize they’ve fallen into that classic trap. They work like crazy, they make good money, but what a fucking life it is even when you have money and you don’t have time to spend it. Of course, almost none of these people are rich and the whole town is just an illusion of wealth and success, and as the name of the film suggests, the whole year is spent waiting for the carnival on the nearby beach.

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And only then does the complete madness begin, because practically all the inhabitants of this city of fifty thousand inhabitants sell everything they have so that they can get to the carnival. In these final parts of this extremely interesting, dynamic and even witty and honest documentary we see people who work as slaves for 360 days from morning to night, and then get rid of refrigerators, TVs, resell them on the road to get to the carnival. Great is “Waiting for the Carnival” a film about an unstoppably changing world, but also a film about human nature that is exactly the same on every part of the globe. The author talks to many people about the concept of money, capitalism, happiness and their dreams, and all these people, both old and young, dream of one day being rich.

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They hope that patient and dedicated work will one day bring them wealth and enable a comfortable life if not for them, then at least for their descendants. It is difficult to conclude whether they really believe that this will happen to them, but they are convinced that it is possible, although it is clear to all of us that capitalism is not a system designed to make everyone rich and successful. These Brazilians are great, and Gomez’s masterful film captures their relaxed, playful, almost carnival spirit with a startling work ethic, a dream that makes these people push themselves to the limit and dream that one day one of them may become rich.


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