267 Great Directors: Fernando Meirelles

“If you do a film with a high budget, people want to control it. Marketing people tell you what to do, and where to cut, so they can get their money back. I am more interested in doing smaller films that I can control.”


What Got This Director Here?
: Two hit wonder. Will probably drop off soon.

My Favorite Past Experience Was…: N/A

What Did I Watch: City of God/Constant Gardener.

Where Does He Fit: City of God is one of the most formally exciting thrillers out there, a series of machine gun cuts and cameras following people as they run through the slums to catch chickens. The death toll is so much that we become indifferent to it all. Very impressive stuff, but the core sure feels a bit thin. Still kind of admired it, even though I cannot consider that a positive, for how willing it is to just give us a good time amidst some deeply horrible circumstances and not have it feel like exploitation, since the very shallow commentary on the state of affairs in Brazil is milked into everything that our residents undergo.

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I frankly preferred The Constant Gardener to City of God, which is definitely a bit middlebrow prestige in its aesthetic and contains some howlers in the script. Fiennes and Weisz, however, are doing some amazing work, with the latter’s Oscar win giving full life to a woman who is a contradictory portrait, obnoxious and fiery yet deeply charismatic in how she makes an impression. You can see why such a bland man would love her and why an evil corporation would want to kill her. Shame the cinematography is so uninspired this time around, but we can’t have everything from such a fundamentally bland director I guess.

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Most Valuable Asset: Environments.
Most Excited For: Er…maybe he’ll get his groove back? And then make something genuinely great?
Did They Deserve a Spot?: Not at all, especially since Blindness/360 look bad.

Coming Up Next: Recent BP winner Steve McQueen.

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