There is fire, there is oil, there is politics, there is religion. Andreia confidently leads a tough motorcycle gang through the Sol Nascente favela, a large community on the outskirts of Brasilia. She belongs to the Gasolineiras de Kebradas, a group of women under the leadership of Chitara, who take matters into their own hands by refining illegally tapped oil in their own plant. They guard it armed with rifles.
Chitara’s sister Léa explains how she joined them when she was released from prison. It’s one of the few moments when someone addresses the camera directly. In Dry Ground Burning, Adirley Queirós, whose boldness and engagement put him at the forefront of independent Brazilian cinema, teams up with co-director and cinematographer Joana Pimenta. Her calm yet dramatically powerful camerawork captures a vivid reality blended with staged events. The women play versions of themselves in this broad panorama charged with energy, encompassing Andreia’s political struggle, personal memories, music and song. This immersion in the real Brazil has won awards at festivals including Cinéma du Réel.