5 MOVIES SIMILAR TO BLACK ORPHEUS
Young lovers Orfeu (Breno Mello) and Eurydice (Marpessa Dawn) run through the favelas of Rio during Carnaval, on the lam from a hitman dressed like Death (Ademar Da Silva) and Orfeu’s vengeful fiancée Mira (Lourdes de Oliveira) and passing between moments of fantasy and stark reality. This impressionistic retelling of the Greek legend of Orpheus and Eurydice introduced bossa nova to the world with its soundtrack by young Brazilian composers Luiz Bonfá and Antonio Carlos Jobim.
1. MADAME SATA
In the 1930s slums of Rio de Janeiro, João Francisco dos Santos (Lázaro Ramos) is many things — the son of black slaves, an ex-con who spent more than two decades in prison, a gangster, a homosexual, and patriarch to a surrogate family of social outcasts. João seeks an outlet of expression through a cabaret act, where he cultivates the transvestite stage persona Madame Satã and becomes a revolutionary icon for society’s neglected during a time of upheaval in post-abolition Brazil.
Homeless adolescent Pixote (Fernando Ramos Da Silva) finds himself thrown into a juvenile prison in a roundup of São Paulo’s street children. The prison is a nightmarish world where sadistic guards torture and murder the young inmates. Fleeing with a transgendered fellow inmate named Lilica (Jorge Juliao) and her boyfriend, Dito (Gilberto Moura), Pixote journeys to the streets of Rio de Janeiro and becomes enmeshed in an underworld of drugs and violence.
3. MON ONCLE
Genial, bumbling Monsieur Hulot (Jacques Tati) loves his top-floor apartment in a grimy corner of the city, and cannot fathom why his sister’s family has moved to the suburbs. Their house is an ultra-modern nightmare, which Hulot only visits for the sake of stealing away his rambunctious young nephew (Alain Becourt). Hulot’s sister (Adrienne Servantie), however, wants to win him over to her new way of life, and conspires to set him up with a wife and job.
4. LITTLE CHILDREN
Sarah (Kate Winslet) is a well-educated woman who cannot come to terms with her life as a housewife and mother. Brad (Patrick Wilson), a stay-at-home dad, is married to a beautiful filmmaker (Jennifer Connelly) and goes skateboarding instead of studying for the bar exam. The pair meet at a playground and soon begin having secret trysts while their children nap and their spouses are at work.
5. HEADING SOUTH
Three older women — Ellen (Charlotte Rampling), a university professor from New England; Brenda (Karen Young), a housewife from Georgia; and Sue (Louise Portal), a blue-collar Canadian — descend upon a Haitian resort in a lusty haze. Hoping to escape from dissatisfaction and loneliness, the women repeatedly hire handsome local men for casual sex. But, when Brenda begins to develop feelings for gigolo Legba (Ménothy Cesar), the sudden appearance of honest emotion throws the trio into turmoil.