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Estamira 2004

  • Marcos Prado
  • October 1, 2004
  • 121 mins
  • Portuguese
  • Documentary
Estamira is a 63-year-old woman who suffers from schizophrenia. She leads a tough life and has supported herself for the past 20 years by picking through garbage at the Jardim Gramacho Disposal Area in Rio de Janeiro. The film follows her starting in 2000, the year she begins treatment in a psychiatric clinic. At first, it is hard to understand her in her stream-of-consciousness sentences, delusions and obsessions. Gradually, however, we get to know her as a woman who can have quiet and lucid moments despite her illness. Interviews with her grown-up children provide the necessary background information. Grainy black-and-white and lyrical colour images alternate with one another and highlight the almost surrealist decor of the dump, where among giant, smoking mounds of garbage, a handful of people and flocks of black vultures are looking for anything worth taking.

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