Thursday, May 10, 2018 - 8:15pm
Saturday, May 12, 2018 - 7:00pm
Community Partner(s)
Cultural Partner(s)
Luiz Bolognesi | 
Brazil |
 2018 | 
81 minutes

“Genocide kills people in their physical bodies and ethnocide in their spirit, their essence, their way of living, their culture.” - A Manifesto of Indigenous People of Brazil

The Paiter Suruí people, whose territory is located in the Brazilian Amazon, didn’t have contact with the outside world until the late 1960s. Since then their traditional way of life has been threatened by the encroachment of Western values, religion, medicine, and technology. Perpera, an elder who works as a doorman at the local church, recounts how he stopped his shamanism after the village priest denounced the practice as connected to the devil. But Perpera can still speak to the spirits of the forest, and when illness strikes, the community turns to him, seeking his ancestral knowledge.

Coinciding with Ex-Shaman’s world premiere at the Berlinale, a group of twenty-seven Indigenous leaders from various territories in Brazil released a powerful manifesto calling for the respect of shamans, the natural world, and traditional cultures. In the spirit of this message, Luiz Bolognesi’s immersive cinematography elucidates the gentle rhythms of village life and the surrounding environment. The manifesto’s call to action: “More Shamans, more Sky, more Spirits, more Forest, more Life. Less hate. Less intolerance. Less racism,” could not be more necessary or more vital. -MS


Luiz Bolognesi

Born in São Paulo, Brazil in 1966, Luiz Bolognesi an award-winning director and screenwriter. Ex-Shaman is Luiz’s second feature as a director after Rio 2096, a Story of Love and Fury, (winner of the Cristal Award of Best Picture at the Annecy Animated Film Festival in 2013). His writing credits include: Bicho de Sete Cabeças (Brainstorm) - Locarno and Toronto 2001, Chega de Saudade (The Ballroom) - Best Screenplay by the Brazilian Film Academy, the Recife film festival, and APCA - São
Paulo Art Critics Association, Birdwatchers (La Terra degli Uomini Rossi) - in Competition at Venice 2008, As Melhores Coisas do Mundo (The Best Things in the World ) - Rome IFF, Best Screenplay at Recife FF, Amazonia 3D - closing film at Venice 2014, and Elis, 2016. His most recent projects were the screenplays for Como Nossos Pais (Just Like Our Parents) - Berlin Panorama 2017, and Bingo, o Rei das Manhãs (Bingo, the King of The Mornings) – the official selection of Brasil for the 90th Academy awards.