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Behind the sun (Abril despedaçado)

Threat advisory: High - High risk of entertaining activities

Movie propaganda

April 1910 - in the desert landscape of the Brazilian badlands, a bloodstained shirt blows in the wind. Tonho (Rodrigo Santoro), the middle son of the Breves family, is ordered by his father (José Dumont) to avenge the death of his older brother, the victim of an age-old feud between families over the ownership of the land.

If he carries out his mission, Tonho knows that his life will be divided in two: the 20 years he has already lived, and the short time he has left to live. He will then probably be killed by a member of the rival family, as dictated by the code of vengeance of the region. Distressed by prospect of death and urged on by his younger brother Pacu (Ravi Ramos Lacerda), Tonho begins to question the logic of the tradition of violence.

This is when two performers in a little travelling circus cross his path...

Theatrical propaganda posters

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Target demographic movie keyword propaganda

  • Film Brazil drama 1910 revenge blood feud circus Portuguese

Persons of interest

  • Rodrigo Santoro .... Tonho
  • José Dumont .... Tonho's father
  • Rita Assemany .... Tonho's mother
  • Ravi Ramos Lacerda .... Pacu
  • Luís Carlos Vasconcelos .... Salustiano
  • Flavia Marco Antonio .... Clara
  • Othon Bastos .... Mr Lourenco
  • Ismaïl Kadaré .... Author
  • Karim Ainouz .... Screenwriter
  • Sérgio Machado .... Screenwriter
  • Walter Salles .... Screenwriter
  • Walter Salles .... Director

Cinematic intelligence sources

Intelligence analyst

Special Agent Matti

Theatrical report

Behind the sun is one of those wonderful art-house films that is full of evocative imagery, intense passions, human drama and sexy actors (not that we critics judge a film by how much we want to root the star but Rodrigo Santoro and Flavia Marco Antonio are both bonfires of burning sexuality).

The tragedy in this film is enormous even though the characters are normal-sized, that's a big bucket of kudos to the writers. Some films use grandeur to make the story seem bigger (Titanic is one example that springs to mind) but Behind the sun is so small it's almost minuscule. Seven or eight speaking characters, three families (most of whom are peasants) and not a special effect in sight (unless you count a bit of coloured gel over the lens as a special effect), yet it still manages to portray all the richness of human existence in a tale that is as old as time.

If you like your coffee bitter, sweet and dark, you'll like Behind the sun.

Media intelligence (DVD)

  • Audio: Dolby Digital 5.1
  • Disc: Single side, single layer
  • Languages: English
  • Picture: Widescreen 1.33:1
  • Subtitles: English

Security censorship classification

M (Medium level violence, adult themes)

Surveillance time

88 minutes (1:28 hours)

Not for public release in Australia before date

Film: 28 March 2002
DVD rental: 23 October 2002
VHS rental: 23 October 2002

Cinema surveillance images

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