This film comes out of something that happened in Rio de Janeiro in the 1950's. A woman wants to kill her husband to free herself from an impossible life. She needs accomplices. She tries to attract a soldier. She then seduces the owner of a night club in the hope that love could give him the strength to kill. After the murder, however, the woman falls prey to a deep emotional crisis.
"In Porto das Caixas I wanted to make a film that had two principal components. First, I wanted to give a fundamental importance to the character of the woman. Second, I wanted the woman to represent, in some way, that which is an abandoned country. What I am saying is that I wanted the whole social content that was part of the very roots of Cinema Nôvo not to come out of an abstract social situation, but to come out of characters in whom the audience could perceive a series of human and social problems that exist in Brazil. There is also the total indifference of the professional politicians towards the people's problems. There are the people, who are completely submissive while the politicians avoid making any agrarian reforms and lose themselves in demagogy. There are people unable to understand. There was also a criticism of the people, a criticism that Glauber took up in Terra em transe, where the people were criticized for their flat-out lack of the strength to get themselves out of a certain situation, i.e. to rebel. In Porto das Caixas it is the character of the woman who is the one to free herself from her situation by killing her husband, who represents for her a whole restricted world that is unable to act." (Paulo César Saraceni)
Paulo César Saraceni
Paulo César Saraceni was born in Rio de Janeiro in 1933. He is one of the most important directors of Brazilian Cinema Novo. In 1961 he attended courses at the Centro Sperimentale di Cinematografia in Rome, and the following year he directed Porto das Caixas, his first full-length movie. He presented his film O Viajante at the 1999 Torino Film Festival.
Arraial do Cabo (1960), Porto das Caixas (1962), Integração Racial (1964), O Desafio (1965), Capitú (1968), A Casa Assasinada (1971), Amor, Carnaval e Sonhos (1972), Anchieta, José do Brasil (1977), Ao Sul do Meu Corpo (1982), Natal da Portela (1988), O Viajante (1998), Garrincha (2001), Banda de Ipanema (2001).
Screenplay: Paulo César Saraceni, Lucio Cardoso.
Director of photography: Mário Carneiro.
Art director: José Henrique Bello.
Editor: Nelo Melli.
Music: Antonio Carlos Jobim.
Cast and characters: Irma Alvarez (la donna), Reginaldo Faria (l'amante), Paulo Padilha (il marito), Sergio Sanz (il soldato), Josef Guerreiro (il barbiere), Margarida Rey (donna che vende le armi), José Henrique Bello.
Director assistant: Sergio Sanz.
Production company: Equipe Produtora Cinematográfica, Elísio de Sousa Freitas.