Black against White

  • Wagner Morales
  • Brazil
  • 2004
  • 78 min
  • Jan Vrijman Fund
In one of the southern suburbs of São Paulo, on the border between the favelas and the better neighbourhoods, is a soccer field where blacks and whites meet once a year to play against each other. A white and a black friend initiated the event thirty years ago, with fraternisation as their goal. The rest of the year, the match is food for stories, legends and jokes. Whereas moment whites and blacks sit together in the local pub as brothers, the next a black player leaves when “monkey” jokes are told. They are just kidding, everyone insists, but director Wagner Morales exposes the prejudices that still play a role under the skin. He does this by making creative use of colour and technical problems that his crew is wrestling with: they can only shoot in black-and-white for a whole day. But reality has more colours than black and white. Asked about their skin colour, people answer chocolate, brown or mustard-coloured, and about a doubtful case they say, “He is a Brazilian; he is a mix.” Sometimes confusion even arises about who plays for black and white: one of the players, a mix between a “black” mother and a “white” father, has played for the black team in recent years, to his father's sorrow. The 2003 match is won by the blacks after a heated contest, but afterwards everybody celebrates together again.


  • 78 min
  • color
  • video
  • Spoken languages: Portuguese
Wagner Morales
Malu Viana for Polo de Imagem
Eduardo Duwe
Lessandro Sócrates
Gabriela Cunha

IDFA history

Jan Vrijman Fund

Jan Vrijman Fund
Supported with €15000 for Classic: Production & postproduction

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IDFA history

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