Firmly rooted in the tradition of music bios, but with such a unique subject it transcends the genre, veteran Miguel Faria Jr.'s salute to the great Brazilian composer Vinicius de Moraes is something more than a listing of triumphs pre- and post- "The Girl from Ipanema."

Firmly rooted in the tradition of music bios, but with such a unique subject it transcends the genre, veteran Miguel Faria Jr.’s salute to the great Brazilian composer Vinicius de Moraes (1913-1980) is something more than a listing of triumphs pre- and post- “The Girl from Ipanema.” The pantheon of Brazilian music, from Caetano Veloso to Chico Buarque and Gilberto Gil, parade through a carnival of sassy, innovative tunes that have become evergreens, recounting stories about Vinicius as musician, poet, diplomat and lover of nine wives. This rich-looking production, which seems made for ancillary, should sing a lucrative song.

Spending, drinking and marrying wife after wife, Vinicius wrote plays, poems and the music and lyrics to 400 ground-breaking songs, all the while carrying on a diplomatic career until kicked out by the dictatorship in 1969. Working alongside Antonio Carlos Jobim and Joao Gilberto, he created the Bossa Nova; later he paired with Toquinho, Tom Jobim and other lights. Personal commentary is heard from his daughter and film’s producer, Susana de Moraes. Actors Camila Morgado and Ricardo Blat provide a pretty frame, reciting Vinicius’ poetry (he published 12 books of it).

Vinicius

Brazil

Production

A 1001 Filmes/Iberautor Promociones Culturales/Paramount Home Entertainment Intl. production. Produced by Miguel Faria Jr., Susana de Moraes. Executive producer, Tereza Gonzalez. Directed by Miguel Faria Jr. Screenplay, Faria, Diana Vasconcellos with Eucanaa Ferraz.

Crew

Camera (color), Lauro Escorel; editor, Vasconcellos; music, Luiz Claudio Ramos; production designer, Marcos Flaksman; costume designer, Marilia Carneiro. Reviewed at San Sebastian Film Festival (Latin Horizons Special Screenings), Sept. 19, 2005. Running time: 120 MIN.

With

Camila Morgado, Ricardo Blat, Antonio Candido, Caetano Veloso, Carlos Lyra, Carlinhos Vergueiro, Chico Buarque, Ferreira Gullar, Edu Lobo, Francis Hime, Georgiana de Moraes, Gilberto Gil, Luciana de Moraes, Maria Bethania, Maris de Moraes, Miucha, Susana Moraes, Tonia Carrero, Toquinho.
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