Wednesday, 18 February 2015

Capital Celluloid 2015 - Day 61: Mon Mar 2

Queimada (Pontecorvo, 1969): BFI Southbank, NFT2, 6pm

This film will be introduced by the excellent Richard Combs.

Chicago Reader review:
The title of Gillo Pontecorvo's monumental 1969 film about 19th-century colonialism and revolution was going to be “Quemada”—Spanish for “burned”—until Spanish authorities pressured him into substituting Portugal as the imperial power. In his favorite performance, Marlon Brando plays an English agent sent to a Caribbean island circa 1840 to foment a slave revolt; a decade later he returns to crush the rebellion for a sugar company. Cut by 20 minutes, retitled Burn!, and dumped, the film never had a chance to reach a wide public. This restored version has the drawback of Brando being dubbed into Italian, but it's still remarkable—conceptually and intellectually more ambitious than Pontecorvo's The Battle of Algiers, even if not as successful. Brando departs from habit in playing someone intelligent but callous rather than dumb but sensitive.
Jonathan Rosenbaum

Here (and above) is the trailer.

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