Brazil was the last Western nation to abolish slavery, in 1888. Social segregation based on background and skin color continues to this day, partly as a result of the massive influx of Europeans—they had access to jobs, land, and cheap loans, while the Black population was left to fend for themselves.
Filmmaker Toni Venturi, a Brazilian with Italian roots, interviews a large number of his compatriots about their experiences with racism: a doctor describes how he was mistaken for a thief, and a domestic worker tells of being treated like a slave by her employer. As if these stories weren’t shocking enough, the tragic account of a woman from São Paulo reminds us of what racism can ultimately lead to: police officers beat her son to death on the street because he didn’t have his identity card.
Venturi’s poetic sequencing of finely lit interviews, philosophical reflections, archive footage, and musical intermezzos yields a multifaceted picture of deeply rooted everyday racism—including consideration of the director’s own position.