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Virar Mar

In a poetic exploration of the human relationship with water, 'Virar Mar' travels between Brazil's drought-stricken backlands and Germany's waterlogged swamps.


Why watch this film?

Directed by the duo Danilo Carvalho and Philipp Hartmann, but scripted by the latter, 'Virar Mar' has a good initial idea and is quite simple: to talk about the relationship of people and society as a whole with water. In Brazil, there is a lack of water; in Germany, there is an abundance. In the Northeast backlands, people struggle not to die of thirst. In a German region, they struggle not to drown. It is in this dichotomy of scenarios that 'Virar Mar' seeks to build its poetry. Initially, it succeeds. It is interesting to see the experimental and creative editing work of the film, which stitches together images that contradict each other. In the game of fictional documentary (or fictional documentary?), 'Virar Mar' confuses the viewers on several levels. What is real, what is invented? In these confusions, which further muddle this dichotomy between the different realities of the two countries, the feature film succeeds. It shows that it has a very good idea, with a broad worldview in which truths contradict each other. However, it is a pity that it does not manage to convey much of this. 'Virar Mar' does not find a way to make the script advance, bring more ideas and reflections. It just stays in the questions, without going too far. However, it can be a good way to think: what is my relationship with the water I use, drink and take a shower?



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Plot summary

Traveling without borders between Brazil's northeastern hinterlands and the swamps of northern Germany, between drought and abundance, the filmmakers register the human race's complex and pivotal relationship with water. Travelling across oceans through a simple cut, the film flows between imagination, chronicle, and rehearsal, proposing unexpected images, thoughts, and constructions with each new scene. If the climatic apocalypse seems increasingly inevitable, it seems especially relevant to review the human condition with an open eye in the face of the planet's constitutive element.

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