The Killing of a Sacred Deer
Visages villages
Happy End
A Ghost Story
Battle of the Sexes
Savage grace in various states of undress

Rânia

Brazil, 2011 | Roberta Marques
Tom Mes checked in from Rotterdam to see the international premiere of the Brazilian film Rânia.

"I have this bad thing in my chest", Rânia says. "It only goes away when I dance." And dance Rânia does. And not just her. For the 85-minute duration of Roberta Marques's film, the camera lingers on women's bodies dancing, walking, lazing at the beach, sleeping in the daytime after a night on the town — their savage grace emphasised by their various states of undress, revealing skin textures and forms that range from the slender and toned figures of young Rânia and her even more nubile best friend Zizi to the pale and sagging parchment flesh of a bathing aged matriarch.

Rânia is part of a dance company. While her mother spends her days arched over the kitchen table sewing clothes and her father sits in the same rigid position over his fishnets, Rânia is all movement, eager to dance, to move and to get away.

Her constant companion Zizi already has a life behind her in spite of her young age, having once left Brazil for Italy to become a professional dancer but "ending up on the street" instead, before returning home under the wing of handsome but temperamental dance company owner Dede. Zizi is a pole dancer, as world-wise and confident with her sexuality as Rânia is unaware and searching for her true self. Partially to emulate her best friend, Rânia soon starts dancing at the same nightclub. Meanwhile, an alternative mother figure in the shape of an enigmatic dance instructor tries to keep Rânia on the straight and narrow.

If this sounds like the story premise of a million melodramas, that's because it is. But for something to be cinema, more important than what you tell is how you tell it. The same story was recounted not so long ago as the Christina Aguilera/Cher vehicle Burlesque, which went through all the codes, leaving no cliché unturned and no histrionics unindulged. Marques's film plays more like one where most of the dramatic crescendos have been excised in favour of a more subtle approach. Not a character study, but a figure study. We stay so close to Rânia that much of the context remains out of sight. All we learn is what drifts into her orbit for brief moments: her parents whose hulking bodies seem as fixed into their positions as the rusted hull of the ship that ran aground just off the beach where Rânia and Zizi spend their spare time; a pubescent brother eternally dressed in a drab t-shirt; a nightclub owner and his piercing gazes.

Marques manages to suggest a lot through limited, almost entirely visual means. The casting of Zizi and Rânia, for instance, speaks volumes about their relationship, with the sultry Nataly Rocha forming an effective and evocative contrast with the fledgling Graziela Felix. Purely in her physical presence and attitude, she reminds Rânia of the world that's out there, the foreign places waiting to be discovered and danced through. When the opportunity arrives to tour with her dance troupe, all that stands in the way is the agreement of her unyielding parents.

But that bad thing in her chest is a powerful motivator. Regardless of anyone's opinions or intentions, restless Rânia just want to dance, dance, dance — all the way to who knows where.

Tom Mes

Rânia (Roberta Marques, Brazil 2011, 85')



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Rânia

Februari 2012 #340

Slow Criticism 2012

Titelindex


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R

R U THERE
R.W. FASSBINDER COLLECTIE I & II
RABAT
RABBIT HOLE
RABBIT ON THE MOON
RABBIT-PROOF FENCE
Race
RACHEL GETTING MARRIED
RACING STRIPES
RADELOOS
RADIOLAND MURDERS
LA RAFLE.
THE RAGE: CARRIE 2
The Raid
The Raid 2
The Railway Man
RAIN DOGS
THE RAINBOW WARRIORS OF WAIHEKE ISLAND
RAINING STONES
RAISE YOUR VOICE
RAISING CAIN
RAISING HELEN
THE RAMEN GIRL
Ramon en het Paard van Sinterklaas
Rams
La rançon de la gloire (Xavier Beauvois over)
RANDOM HEARTS
RANGO
Rânia
RANSOM
RAPA-NUI
RAPID FIRE
RAPUNZEL
RASPUTIN
THE RAT PACK
RAT RACE
RATATOUILLE
RATCATCHER
Ratchet & Clank
RATJETOE EN DE THORNBERRY'S: BIJ DE BEESTEN AF
RATJETOE — DE RUGRATS FILM
Die Räuberin
The Raven
RAVENOUS
Raw
RAY
Razend
THE READER (Stephen Daldry over)
THE REAL BLONDE
THE REAL HOWARD SPITZ
Real Steel
Réalité
Reality
REALITY BITES
THE REAPING
REAR WINDOW
Reasonable Doubt
REBECCA
Rebelle
Rebels
REBELS OF THE NEON GOD
Rebelse stad
THE REBIRTH
THE REBOUND
THE RECKONING
RECLAIM YOUR BRAIN (FREE RAINER)
RECONSTRUCTION
RECOUNT
THE RECRUIT
RECYCLE
RED
Red 2
RED BEADS
RED CORNER
RED DRAGON
RED DUST
RED EYE
RED HOT
Red Lights
RED PLANET
RED RIDING HOOD
RED RIDING-TRILOGIE
RED ROAD
RED ROCK WEST
THE RED SHOES
THE RED STUFF
The Red Turtle
THE RED VIOLIN
REDACTED
REDS
LE REFUGE
Refugiado
REGARDE LA MER
REGENERATION
Het regent gehaktballen 2
HET REGENT GEHAKTBALLEN 3D
Regilaul
La región salvaje
Regression
LES REGRETS
REIGN OF ASSASSINS
REIGN OF FIRE
REINDEER GAMES
LA REINE MARGOT
DIE REISE NACH KAFIRISTAN
RELAX... IT'S JUST SEX!
THE RELIC
La religieuse
RELIGULOUS
Remainder
THE REMAINS OF THE DAY
REMBRANDT
REMBRANDT'S J'ACCUSE
Remember
REMEMBER ME
REMEMBER THE TITANS
RENAISSANCE
LES RENDEZ-VOUS DE PARIS
RENDITION
Renesse
RENO 911!: MIAMI
Renoir
RENT-A-FRIEND
Réparer les vivants
The Repentant (El Taaib)
THE REPLACEMENT KILLERS
REPO MEN
REPRISE
REQUIEM
REQUIEM FOR A DREAM
RESCUE DAWN
RESERVATION ROAD
RESERVOIR DOGS
THE RESIDENT
RESIDENT EVIL
RESIDENT EVIL: AFTERLIFE 3D
RESIDENT EVIL: APOCALYPSE
RESIDENT EVIL: EXTINCTION
Resident Evil: Retribution
Resident Evil: The Final Chapter
RESISTANCE
La résistance de l'air
RESPIRO
RESSOURCES HUMAINES
Rester vertical
Restless
RESTORATION
RESURRECTION MAN
Retour à Ithaque
Retour en Bourgogne
THE RETURN (VOZVRASJÈNJE)
RETURN OF THE JEDI
RETURN TO HANSALA
Return to Homs (IDFA)
RETURN TO ME
RETURN TO PARADISE
De reünie
The Reunion
REVANCHE
REVELATION
The Revenant
Revenge of the Green Dragons
REVENGER'S TRAGEDY
THE REVENGERS' COMEDIES
REVISION: APOCALYPSE 2
REVOLUTIONARY ROAD
The Rewrite
REX GILDO, DE VAL VAN EEN SCHLAGERKONING
REYKJAVIK-ROTTERDAM
Rhino Season
RHYTHM IS IT
RICHARD III
RICHIE RICH
RICHTING ENGELAND
RICHTING WEST
Ricki and the Flash
RICKY
Riddick
Ride Along
Ride Along 2
RIDE WITH THE DEVIL
RIDICULE
RIDING ALONE FOR THOUSANDS OF MILES
RIDING GIANTS
RIEN À DÉCLARER
RIEN À FAIRE
DE RIETFLUIT
RIFF RAFF
RIGHTEOUS KILL
THE RING
THE RING 2
THE RINGMASTER
Rings
RINGU/RING
RIO
Rio 2
RIO, EEN DAG IN AUGUSTUS CAMPO GRANDE — CENTRAL DO BRASIL
Rio: I Love You
The Riot Club
Riphagen
RIPLEY'S GAME
Ripper Street
Rise of the Guardians
Rise of the Planet of the Apes
Risen
RISING SUN
Risk
RIT OVER DE GRENS
Rita & Krokodil
THE RITE
THE RIVER
A River Below
A RIVER RUNS THROUGH IT
THE RIVER WILD
DE RIVIER OKKERVIL
RIVIERA HOTEL
RIZE
RKO 281 — THE BATTLE OVER CITIZEN KANE
THE ROAD
THE ROAD (DE WEG)
THE ROAD HOME
Road North
THE ROAD TO ELDORADO
THE ROAD TO GUANTANAMO
ROAD TO PERDITION
THE ROAD TO WELLVILLE
ROAD TRIP
ROADRACERS
ROADS TO KOKTEBEL
ROB ROY
Rob the Mob
UNE ROBE D'ÉTÉ
Roberto Succo
ROBIN HOOD
ROBIN HOOD, MEN IN TIGHTS
Robinson Crusoe
Robocop
Robot & Frank
ROBOTS
ROCCO E I SUOI FRATELLI
THE ROCK
Rock 'n Roll
Rock of Ages
ROCK STAR
ROCK'N ROLL JUNKIE
ROCKNROLLA
ROCKY BALBOA
HET RODE KORENVELD
De rode ziel
Rodin
ROGUE ASSASSIN
Rogue One — A Star Wars Story
ROGUE TRADER
Rokjesdag
ROLE MODELS
ROMANCE
ROMANCE & CIGARETTES
ROMANCE DE VALENTÍA — ONLY THE BRAVE
ROMANZO CRIMINALE
ROMASANTA
ROMEO IS BLEEDING
ROMEO MUST DIE
ROMPER STOMPER
ROMY & MICHELE'S HIGH SCHOOL REUNION
Ron Goossens, Low-Budget Stuntman
Ronal The Barbarian
RONIN
ROOKSPOREN
Room
Room 514
ROOS REBERGEN — "WEET IK NIET ZO GOED..."
ROPE
ROSAS DANST ROSAS
LES ROSEAUX SAUVAGES
ROSENSTRASSE
ROSETTA
ROSIE: THE DEVIL IN MY HEAD
ROSINE
ROTVOS
ROUGH MAGIC
Rough Night (Girls Night Out)
THE ROUND UP
ROUNDERS
LA ROUTE
ROUTE IRISH
The Rover
A Royal Affair
A Royal Night Out
THE ROYAL TENENBAUMS
RR
RUBBER
RUBY & QUENTIN
Ruby Sparks
RUDO Y CURSI
RUDYARD KIPLING'S THE JUNGLE BOOK
RUGRATS IN PARIS
RUHR
THE RUINS
THE RULES OF ATTRACTION
RULES OF ENGAGEMENT
The Rum Diary
RUMBA
RUMBLE IN THE BRONX
RUMOR HAS IT...
Run All Night
Run and Jump
RUN, FAT BOY, RUN
RUNAWAY BRIDE
THE RUNAWAY JURY
THE RUNAWAYS
RUNDSKOP
The Runner
Runner, Runner
RUNNING SCARED
Rush
RUSH HOUR
RUSH HOUR 2
RUSH HOUR 3
RUSHMORE
DE RUSLUI
RUSSIAN ARK
Ruth & Alex