‘Bacurau’ Trailer: Kleber Mendonça Filho’s Cannes Drama Is Life or Death

The "Neighboring Sounds" and "Aquarius" auteur's latest premieres this week.
Bacurau movie

Kleber Mendonça Filho is returning to Cannes. After premiering “Aquarius” on the Croisette three years ago, the Brazilian auteur is set to debut his new film “Bacurau” at the festival this month. Juliano Dornelles co-directed the new film, which now has a trailer to go along with its inventive premise. Watch it below.

Here’s the brief, evocative synopsis: “A few years from now…Bacurau, a small town in the Brazilian sertão, mourns the loss of its matriarch, Carmelita, who lived to be 94. Days later, its inhabitants notice that their community has vanished from most maps.”

Though light on dialogue, the preview is rinch in arresting imagery: a dog narrowly avoiding a stampede of horses in the small village for which “Bacurau” is named, a funeral procession led by a man playing guitar, a woman performing the throat-slit gesture with her finger across her neck. “We’re under attack,” one man says; then, as the trailer comes to an end, another looks directly into the camera and asks, “Do you want to live or die?”

The former option is far more appealing, not least because it will afford the opportunity to see this film. Cannes, which begins on May 14, will also see the premiere of such anticipated offerings as Jim Jarmusch’s “The Dead Don’t Die,” Terrence Malick’s “A Hidden Life,” Jessica Hausner’s “Little Joe,” Ira Sachs’ “Frankie,” and Bong Joon-ho’s “Parasite.”

“Bacurau” will premiere alongside them in the Official Competition, with a jury led by Alejandro Gonzalez Iñárritu and also featuring Elle Fanning, Maimouna N’Diaye, Kelly Reichardt, Enki Bilal, Alice Rohrwacher, Robin Campillo, Yorgos Lanthimos, and Paweł Pawlikowski.

Barbara Colen stars in the film alongside “Aquarius” star Sônia Braga, Udo Kier, Karine Teles, and Jonny Mars. “Bacurau” has yet to receive distribution.

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