In the last month of the year, the FEST team chose the best feature films that premiered in Portugal during 2016:
“The Lobster”, Yorgos Lanthimos (United Kingdom / France / Irland / Greece / Netherlands)
A satirizing drama that takes us to a dystopian future, where we are forced to find the love of our life, otherwise we’ll turn into an animal.
“Tangerine”, Sean Baker (United States of America)
“Tangerine” was the opening film at FEST, so we surely had to include him in this ultimate list of 2016.
This film shows us the not so glamorous LA that we are used to see, and depicts the sroty of a transgender prostitute that tries to find the pimp who broke her heart.
“Boi Neon”, Gabriel Mascaro (Brazil)
This unexpected and sharp Brazilian film shows us the story of a cowboy from the north part of Brazil – between trips with his bulls – that starts to ramble into sequins, fabrics and sketch dreams.
“The Measure of a Man”, Stephane Brize (France)
Vincent Landon sure is the centre of this film. Just after the crisis – or still in it – we see a man that tries to get a job and ends up working as a security in a supermarket. However, when he has to spy on his co-workers, in order to see if they are stealing and fire them, the character comes across a moral and ethic dilemma.
“American Honey”, Andrea Arnold (United States of America)
“American Honey” is an american road-movie. Star, after running away from home, goes with a group of magazine street vendors who travel trough United States. In this trip, she founds out a world of partying, adventures, crime and love.
“Arrival”, Denis Villeneuve (United States of America)
“Arrival” is a sci-fi film, but not an action one: it’s a down-to-earth version of what the world might be if 12 alien spaceships landed on earth. The central character, brilliantly played by Amy Adams, is the linguist Louise Banks – a refreshing change from the typical sci-fi hero.
“Embrace of the Serpent”, Ciro Guerra (Colombia)
Evan is a nort-american eutnobotanical that finds Karamakete, a chullachaqui that lives isolated, without memories and emotions. When Evan arrives, looking for a holy plant that teaches how to dream, they both go on a trip trough Amazonia, with Karamakete recovering his memory.
“Mustang”, Deniz Erguven (France / Turkey)
A brilliant story of fellowship between five sisters. When their fathers find out that they’re playing with boys from school, trough a neighbour, they start arraging weddings against their will.
With the oldest sisters getting married, the younger sisters try to find ways to escape that same fate.
“Hitchcock / Truffaut”, Kent Jones ((United States of America)
In 1962 Hitchcock and Truffaut gathered for a whole week in Hollywood, to explore the cinematic process – which would originate a book.
In this film, with footage from this encounter, we see directors like Wes Anderson, David Fincher and Martin Scorsese talking about Hitchcock, in a great cinema lesson.
“Rams”, Grímur Hákonarson (Iceland)
When a disease is spread trough the sheep of a rural Island, there’s only one thing to do: kill them.
In order to stop this, two brothers that haven't talked to each other for years, will have to join forces and prevent the death of their dearest thing.
“El Club”, Pablo Larraín (Chile)
In a secular home by the sea live four ex-priests. They live isolated from the rest of the world as a sentence for their previous sins and as a way of excommunication. With a fragile and unpredicted humour, they get restless when an emissary comes from the Vatican to understand the effects of their isolation.
“Fire at Sea”, Gianfranco Rossi (Italy)
This documentary is shot in Lampedusa Island, in Italy, where a great number of refugees from Africa and the Middle East try to enter to rebuild their lives in Europe.
“The Girl on the Train”, Tate Taylor (United States of America)
Rachel, utterly devastated by her recent divorce, passes every single day by a house, where a perfect couple lives, by train. One of these days, what she thought falls apart. She sees Anna betraying her husband and, after it, she’s missing. Rachel sees herself tangled in the middle of everything.
“Chevalier”, Athina Tsangari (Greece)
Six men are in a yacht in the Aegan Sea. They all know each other, either from work or from being related, and to define who is the “Chevalier” they decide to do a game where everything counts to see which one of them is the winner. Thus, in their last trip day, all of the friends will be challenged.
“Neon Demon”, Nicolas Winding Refn (United States of America / Denmark / France)
Jesse arrives to Los Angeles to be a model. However, when she arrives she’s eaten up by groups of beauty obsessed woman, who do everything to suck what she has.