Narcissus Off Duty

Narciso em férias

  • Renato Terra, Ricardo Calil
  • Brazil
  • 2020
  • 84 min
  • Dutch Premiere
  • Best of Fests

On December 13, 1968, Brazil’s military rulers enacted the AI-5 decree, a law allowing the arrest of “suspects” without any form of legal process. Two weeks later, plainclothes police officers arrested and jailed 26-year-old singer-composer Caetano Veloso. He spent the next week in solitary confinement, and the following two months in a military prison.

Fifty years on, this now world-famous singer can still talk about his experiences in prison with great precision, rationally, and emotionally at times. Situating the interview in a large, bare concrete room focuses the attention exclusively on his intimate and often painful memories—the viewer is not distracted from them for even a moment.

Veloso’s account of his detention, and his asides about its aftermath, testify to the impact that the deprivation of liberty can have on the human spirit, and on this free spirit in particular. The film also offers insights into the practices of the military dictatorship, which lasted until 1985, and which populists such as Bolsonaro look back on with an inappropriate sense of nostalgia.


  • 84 min
  • color
  • DCP
  • Spoken languages: Portuguese
  • Subtitles in: English
Renato Terra, Ricardo Calil
Paula Lavigne / Uns Produções e Filmes, Maria Carlota Fernandes Bruno / VideoFilmes Produções Artísticas LTDA
Fernando Young
Henrique Alqualo, Jordana Berg
Valéria Ferro

IDFA history

Dutch Premiere
Best of Fests

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IDFA history

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