The Brazilian film Arábia by Affonso Uchoa and João Dumans was announced as the winner of the top award for Best Latin American Film of the Year at the 8th Annual Cinema Tropical Awards, which were announced at a special event at The New York Times Company headquarters.
The film highlights the story of André, a young boy that lives in an industrial neighborhood in Ouro Preto, Minas Gerais, near an old aluminum factory. Once a week, his aunt Márcia, a voluntary nurse at the community hospital, visits him and his younger brother to help them with the domestic tasks, while their mother is away.
One day, one of the factory workers, Cristiano, a foreigner with a turbulent background in the neighborhood, suffers an accident at the factory. Márcia gives him first aid right in front of the factory, and asks André to go to Cristiano’s house to get his documents and some clothes. When André arrives there, he finds by chance a mysterious notebook, which he starts to read. André discovers that Cristiano started writing this notebook for the factory’s theater group, where these workers were asked to write down something about their lives. But Cristiano couldn’t stop writing. As a fairy tale, the film divides itself, and plunges into Cristiano’s life. And what we see and listen from this point on is the epic story of the latter’s life – a worker’s life whose happiness and sufferings reveal from another point of view the story of Brazilian social and economic development in the last ten years.
The non-profit media arts organization Cinema Tropical also announced that New York audiences will have the chance to see the award-wining and nominated films as they will be showcased as part of the Cinema Tropical Festival to take place on February 2-4, 2018 at Museum of the Moving Image.
New York-based Cinema Tropical (CT) is the leading presenter of Latin American cinema in the U.S. Founded by Carlos A. Gutiérrez and Monika Wagenberg in 2001 with the mission of distributing, programming and promoting what was to become the biggest boom of Latin American cinema in decades, CT brought U.S. audiences some of the first screening of films such as Amores Perros and Y Tu Mamá También.
The Cinema Tropical AWARDS were created in 2010 to honor excellence in Latin American filmmaking, and it is the only international award entirely dedicated to honoring the artistry of recent Latin American cinema.