DIRECTOR: Daniel Ribeiro CAST: Ghilhermo Lobo, Fabio Audi, Tess Amorim, Lúcia Romano, Eucir de Souza, Selma Egrei, Isabela Guasco, Victor Filgueiras, Pedro Carvalho, Bárbara Pereira
A Word from the Guise:
**SPOILERS!!! Seriously I pretty much divulge the entire story**
The film is wonderful in every aspect. Leonardo (Ghilhermo Lobo) is a blind boy, who his fed up with the constant bullying from his classmates or his overbearingly protective parents. He can’t even really confide any of this to his best friend Giovana (Tess Amorim), because all she wants to talk about are the boys she likes, and how slutty the other girls are who talk to those boys. But then Gabriel (Fabio Audi) moves to town and is the new kid in the class. All of the girls, including Giovana, fawn over Gabriel, but he really shows no interest in them. Instead, he spends his time with Leo, who finally feels like he has someone in his life who doesn’t try to monitor and control his every movement. Gabriel encourages Leo to do things outside his comfort zone; they sneak out at 1 am to watch the eclipse (there’s a really sweet scene where Gabriel has to explain what an eclipse is, because Leo’s never seen one.)
Leo and Gi attend a party that Gabriel wheedles them into. There’s a scene at the party where Gi and Gabriel are in the bathroom, talking about Leo and how Gi feels like she’s been replaced. She tries to kiss Gabriel, but he stops her. At the same time, Leo’s classmates have convinced him to play spin-the-bottle, and are intending to play a prank on him with a pug when Gi appears and yells at them all. Not realising it was a prank, and thinking he was going to be kissing a person, Leo yells at Gi for being jealous. Gi storms off as Gabriel stumbles outside with Leo. He tries to convince Leo that they should leave the party, but Leo gets frustrated and finally explodes, all of his anger at being micromanaged by everyone flowing out. He yells, “Why does no one want me to kiss anyone!” At that moment, emboldened by alcohol, Gabriel kisses him quickly on the mouth and then runs away, leaving Leo stunned. Gabriel later pretends that he doesn’t remember anything from that night.
The rest of the film progresses with a kind of cat-and-mouse romance. You know that Gabriel loves Leo and you know that Leo loves Gabriel, but neither of them will say it, because they’re both scared that they’ll be rejected, or worse: maybe the other isn’t gay? Finally, Leo makes the first move. He asks if Gabriel kissed Karina. Gabriel says no, and that he made up having a girlfriend. The two of them got really drunk talking about their fake ex’s and ended up in the pool. Leo points out that Gabriel must have had a lot more alcohol at the party than he did on the camping trip, if he can remember all of that. Gabriel smiles, he knows now. In an exchange of adorable adolescent nervousness, the two finally kiss, passionately and wonderfully. The film perfectly captures the sincerity of young love, but also the uncertainty and fear when that love is for someone of the same-sex.
The more I think about it, the more I love this film. It may well be one of my favourites. If you don’t mind subtitles, you need to watch this film; if you do mind subtitles, you need to get over it and forget the fact that it’s Portuguese, because this film is incredible.