Glauber Rocha

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Glauber Rocha
Glauber-rocha.jpg
Born (1939-03-14)14 March 1939
Vitória da Conquista, Bahia, Brazil
Died 22 August 1981(1981-08-22) (aged 42)
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Occupation Film director
Years active 1959 – 1981
Spouse(s) Helena Ignez (1959-1961)
Awards FIPRESCI:
1967 Terra em Transe
Prix de la mise en scène:
1968 O Dragão da Maldade contra o Santo Guerreiro
Special Jury Prize for Best Short Film:
1977 Di

Glauber de Andrade Rocha (14 March 1939 – 22 August 1981), better known as Glauber Rocha, was a Brazilian film director, actor and screenwriter. He was a key figure of Cinema Novo and one of the most influential moviemakers of Brazilian cinema. His films Deus e o Diabo na Terra do Sol (Black God, White Devil) and Terra em Transe (Entranced Earth) are often considered to be two of the greatest achievements in Brazilian cinematic history,[1] being selected by Abraccine as, respectively, the second and fifth best Brazilian films of all-time.[2]

Rocha's film possess a staunch avant-garde and experimental nature, making of him a seminal figure of the new wave. His works are noted for their many political overtones, often addressing the passive-aggressive situation of the Third World, which Rocha referred to both metaphorically and objectively as "hunger" in his essay Estética da Fome (The Aesthetics of Hunger). Rocha won the Prix de la mise en scène at the 1969 Cannes Film Festival for Antonio das Mortes and the 1977 Special Jury Prize for Best Short Film for Di. Three of Rocha's films were nominated for the Palm d'Or, including Terra em Transe, which was awarded the FIPRESCI at the 1967 Cannes Film Festival and the Grand Prix of the Locarno Film Festival of the same year.

Biography[edit]

Rocha was born in Vitória da Conquista, Bahia, Brazil and moved with his family to Salvador when he was only 9 years old, there studying in a well-known Presbyterian school.

During his adolescence, he developed great interest in arts, especially theatre and cinema, and even joined a drama group. He was also very active in politics, a trait that would be strongly influential in his works. A member of the Brazilian radical left, he helped start a political party in the late 1950s that called for an anti-capitalist people's revolution and, among other things, advocated the abolition of money.

By the age of 16 he started freelancing for a local newspaper and debuted as a movie reviewer. Later, he attended Law School for about two years and in 1959, after taking part in some projects as assistant, he finally directed his first short, "Pátio". After gaining some recognition in Bahia for his critical and artistic work, Rocha decided to quit college and pursue a journalistic career, as well as being a film-maker.

He is famous for his film trilogy, made up of Deus e o Diabo na Terra do Sol (1964) - perhaps his most acclaimed movie, nominated for the Golden Palm - Terra em Transe (1967) and O Dragão da Maldade Contra o Santo Guerreiro (1969), award-winning for Best Director at Cannes. His films were renowned for their strongly-expressed political themes, often combined with mysticism and folklore, but also for their particular style and photography. Rocha is regarded as one of the best Brazilian directors of all time and leader of the Cinema Novo movement, as well as a full-time polemicist. He once said "I am the Cinema Novo",[3] paraphrasing Louis XIV's famous quote. In an interview with Le Monde, Rocha said "My Brazilian films belong to a whole period when my generation was full of wild dreams and hopes. They are full of enthusiasm, faith and militancy and were inspired by my great love of Brazil."[4]

In 1969 he was a member of the jury at the 6th Moscow International Film Festival.[5] In the following year, Rocha made a brief appearance in the Dziga Vertov Group film Le Vent d'Est. After refusing an invitation by Jean-Luc Godard to shoot a segment of the film, Rocha appeared as a man in a crossway pointing the direction of the political cinema, namely, the Cinema Novo.[6]

In 1971, during the Brazilian military dictatorial regime, he left the country to a voluntary exile, dwelling in many places, such as Spain, Chile and Portugal. He never completely returned home until his last days, when he was transferred from Lisbon, where he had been receiving medical treatment for a lung infection, to Rio de Janeiro. Rocha resisted in hospital for few days, but ultimately died on August 22, 1981, at the age of 42. He had been married three times and had five children.

Filmography[edit]

Year Name Notes and Awards
1959 Pátio Short film
1959 Cruz na Praça Short film
1961 Barravento Rocha's first feature film
1964 Deus e o Diabo na Terra do Sol Official selection of the 1964 Cannes Film Festival
1965 Amazonas, Amazonas Documentary
1966 Maranhão 66 Documentary
1967 Terra em Transe FIPRESCI at the 1967 Cannes Film Festival

Grand Prix of the 1967 Locarno Film Festival

1968 1968 Short film
1969 O Dragão da Maldade Contra o Santo Guerreiro (aka Antonio das Mortes) Prix de la mise-en-scène at the 1969 Cannes Film Festival
1970 Cabeças Cortadas
1970 O Leão de Sete Cabeças
1972 Câncer
1974 História do Brasil Documentary
1975 As Armas e o Povo Documentary (collaborative work)
1977 Di (aka Di Cavalcanti) Short film, Special Jury Prize for Best Shot Film at the 1977 Cannes Film Festival
1977 Jorge Amado no Cinema Documentary
1980 A Idade da Terra Nominated for the Golden Lion at the 1980 Venice Film Festival

Quotations[edit]

On art:

  • "Art is not only talent, but mainly courage"
  • "Art is as hard as love"
  • "Every artist should be crazy and ambitious"
  • "The artist's goal is to outrage"
  • "The camera is an object that lies"
  • "Cinema Novo is the creative synthesis of Brazilian international popular cinema."
  • "Cinema Novo stood with the Brazilian utopia. Whether it is ugly, irregular, dirty, confusing and chaotic, it is, on the other hand, beautiful, shining and revolutionary."

On politics:

  • "The revolutionary truth lies within the minorities"
  • "Dreaming is the only right one cannot forbid"
  • "The State is stronger than the poet"
  • "Stronger than anything is the people's power"
  • "This country needs poets"

On himself:

  • "I'm a single peasant from Vitória da Conquista"
  • "I'm very famous and pretty poor"
  • "You're all misunderstanding my madness!"

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Tose, Juliano. "contracampo – revista de cinema" (in Portuguese). Retrieved 2008-02-06. 
  2. ^ "Abraccine organiza ranking dos 100 melhores filmes brasileiros" (in Portuguese). 27 November 2015. Retrieved 12 November 2016. 
  3. ^ Sidney Rezende :: Livros
  4. ^ https://www.nytimes.com/1981/08/23/obituaries/glauber-rocha-is-dead-at-42-innovative-brazilian-director.html
  5. ^ "6th Moscow International Film Festival (1969)". MIFF. Archived from the original on 2013-01-16. Retrieved 2012-12-17. 
  6. ^ Rocha, Gauber (31 January 1970). "Godard's latest scandal". Retrieved January 17, 2017. 

External links[edit]