• Marcos Prado
  • Brazil
  • 2004
  • 115 min
  • Jan Vrijman Fund
Estamira is 63 years old and 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. Daughter Carolina tells about the time before the hallucinations began, when Estamira was still married and had a job in a supermarket. Estamira's son remembers the day that his mother became so aggressive that he had to leave her in the hospital. The filmmaker tells Estamira's story in a form that dovetails with the protagonist's chaotic life. 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.


  • 115 min
  • color / black and white
  • 35mm
  • Spoken languages: Portuguese
Marcos Prado
Marcos Prado for Zazen Producoes, José Padilha
Marcos Prado
Leandro Lima

IDFA history

Jan Vrijman Fund
Supported with €10000 for Classic: Production & postproduction

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IDFA history

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