Projections - Movie Reviews

Me You Them

Me You Them

Young Brazilian director Andrucha Waddington directs with a subtle, unforced honesty, as the native, revered author of music videos and commercials does better than most of his American counterparts in Me You Them.  The apprentice of talented, veteran countrymen like Hector Babenco and Walter Salles (Central Station) has crafted a thoughtful vision of the Cinema Novo wave from Brazil.  Waddington's modern dramedy is nicely tempered even though many Western viewers won't tolerate the situations up on the screen that come off as a strange twist to the slant of feminism.  Me You Them has enough to offer about a woman, Regina Case's self-assured Darlene Linhares, who has to try to make it as earth mother in northeast Brazil.

Filmed with a sense of silent moments the photography resonates through the stark, dimly sun-lit landscape of the Brazilian outback.

The fictional tale feels well-balanced as a woman in an alternate culture lives with three husbands under the same roof.  From its impoverished setting, shot in and around Bahia, the idea of a female polygamist is never sentimental or contrived.

At the outset, Darlene has a small boy and is pregnant and the senior, brusque Osias (Lima Duarte) is the smart goat farmer who gets a worker and spouse as she needs a home for her (now) two children and herself.

Because her life with Osias is mostly work and little romance or sex, Darlene finds some of the love tonic missing while Osias relaxes in his hammock, through the old man's sweet-natured cousin, Stenio Garcia's mischievous Zezinho.

Zezinho soon is welcomed into the family and Darlene tells that she's pregnant, not disclosing who is the daddy.

Near the halfway point the energetic working mother also becomes enamored with the alluring, younger Ciro, played with modesty and charisma by Carlos Vasconcelos.

Though Me You Them probably is too tranquil to be appreciated as a poignant gender reversal portrait, the not so beautiful case does much to show the inner joys and turmoil of the large- mouthed Darlene within the traditionally male dominated society.

Me You Them

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