Shot over two years from 2014 to 2016, Praia unfolds a portrait of Brazilian life that captures the vibrancy and idiosyncratic eclecticism that draw tourists and locals to the country’s beaches. Filmmaker Guilherme B. Hoffmann takes an observational approach, creating a film that is by turns comic, sweet, and serious as he introduces us to a motley collection of characters on Rio de Janeiro’s iconic Copacabana Beach.
When James Pollard is given a terminal cancer diagnosis, he sets about orchestrating his own death. Like any good theatre producer, he researches options into different modes of burial, and the best means and methodologies of preserving his body after death. This may sound slightly morbid, but the practicality, and often surprising amounts of humour, with which James contends with his situation allows for an openness and freedom in dealing with death.
Family life in all its complicated and humble glory is the heart of Mahdi Zamanpour Kiasari’s film. Butterfly follows Zainab, an indomitable young woman, as she goes about daily routines on her family’s farmstead in rural Iran.