Biography / Drama / History

IMDb Rating 6.7 10 1075

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October 16, 2021 at 09:35 PM



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Movie Reviews

Reviewed by GTeixeira 8 / 10

The Brazilian 'Der Untergang'

Just like the German 'Der Untergang' ('Downfall') chronicled the last days of Hitler's life, 'Getúlio' follows the same pattern: it chronicles the last days of Brazilian's controversial/beloved president/dictator Getúlio Vargas, from the Tonelero street attempt on the life of Carlos Lacerda (a well known opponent of Vargas), the unraveling of the case leading to those closest to Getúlio, the political and public pressure resulted from it all, and eventually to his suicide 19 days later, on August 24, 1954.

The film is very well made, beautifully shot, and above all authentic-looking. It was all shot on location, the beautiful Palácio do Catete, and with much care for the characters to look as accurate as possible. It recreates the feeling of the Brazilian 50's nicely as if following a very detailed history lesson.

As any character-focused film, 'Getúlio' depends on its lead actor: Tony Ramos, the actor chosen to portray Getúlio Vargas, is surprisingly good. He is very well-known and beloved by the Brazilian public for his roles in television series/soap operas; while a bad choice as far as looks are concerned (even after the extensive preparation, he does not look much like Vargas), he has the charisma and talent for the job. Vargas was one of the (if not THE) most liked figures of Brazilian history (the 'Father of the Poor', he was called); since the film deals with his latter life, his image already established, it was ideal for him to be played by someone the public would know and could immediately relate to (ie.: Tony Ramos). It helps that he is also a talented actor, and makes the emotional distress Vargas went through in his last days look very real.

The rest of the cast is also very good. Thiago Justino does a great job as Vargas' security chief and right-hand man, Gregório Fortunato; and the actors portraying Varga's family feel like such, with Drica Moraes in special doing a great job as Vargas' daughter. Alexandre Borges looks like Carlos Lacerda, and plays him well enough, but he couldn't achieve the power of Lacerda's speeches; not that he could be blamed for it, though.

Those who know Brazilian history will also like to see other important figures of the time being portrayed as well. Figures like Nereu Ramos, Café Filho, Tancredo Neves, and Afonso Arinos are all very well represented, though their relatively small roles in the film are almost like cameos (Arinos, in special, is briefly shown doing his amazing speech in Congress calling for Vargas' resignation). It is a minor point, but something history buffs might enjoy.

The film is well paced and developed, trying to play like a political thriller and doing the job well enough. It is very historically accurate, avoiding hinting towards the conspiracy theory involving the Tonelero street attack and instead sticking with the historical facts. Like 'Der Untergang', it focuses a lot on the subject's (here, Vargas') feelings and actions in the eminence of his downfall; it overtly humanizes, making him look like an innocent victim of circumstance and overall siding with him rather than making an impartial biopic.

So, while having a bit of bias (though then again, an unbiased biography has never been made), 'Getúlio' is nonetheless a rare good Brazilian picture and a tribute to one of Brazil's greatest historical figures. Because, love him or hate him, Vargas is a very interesting subject and important historical figure. As he himself said, in his suicide note:

"Serenely, I take my first step on the road to eternity. I leave life to enter history."

Reviewed by adrianaprsouza-63886 7 / 10

The Most Controversial President in Brazilian History

Getúlio (2014) explores a political crisis that happend in the second presidential mandate of Getúlio Dornelles Vargas. He was the most controversial president in Brazilian History.

The past is briefly shown in the beginning so I'm gonna summarize important facts in a chronological way: Vargas was the leader of a Revolution in 1930. He helped ending the Oligarchy Republic, when São Paulo and Minas Gerais politicians and businessmen ruled Brazil. He became a temporary president and after a Civil War with São Paulo, a constitution was created and Getúlio obeyed it. But he would then lead a coup d'etat to keep being the president and also increase his power. Estado Novo, a dictatorship, took place from 1937 to 1945. He was deposed by the army and, some years later, was democraticaly elected, in 1951. The movie plot explores the end of this mandate.

I praise a lot the screenwriters for covering a short period in which many things happend so the pace is agile, but not fast. Also, the lines are well thought out. They summarize previous facts, using characters voices, to remember audience important informations about Vargas. Besides, the screenplay is very impersonal and takes facts rather than opinions as a foundation.

The film tone is a detective one and the scores by Federico Jusid help a lot creating this mysterious and tense atmosphere as well as the cinematography by Walter Carvalho in some scenes. (the ones with more light are beautifully shot too).

João Jardim, the director, was very smart in the use of locations. He chose the best spot in Palácio do Catete (Catete Palace) for each scene. It's possible to feel the planning.

To end this, I think Tony Ramos was a great call to play Getúlio. Not only because of his appearance, but, essentialy, due to his charisma and talent. He had to portray tension without loosing the passionate way of Vargas, and he managed to do so. The other actors are great and are very similar to the historical characters they portray.

Knowing the story reliefs a lot of the tension but it was worth watching anyway.

Reviewed by colarusso-1 7 / 10

Good film.Bad actor

Excellent historical film. Excellent production. The film was made exactly in the real place, the "Palacio do Catete". All the historical background is fantastically precise and I consider this film one authentic lesson of story. The great majority of the actors have a very good resemblance with the historical characters, but Toni Ramos has nothing similar to Getulio Vargas. I know that he is a famous soap opera actor at my country, and, maybe, this was the reason of this dreadful choice. Other thing: the music tries to imitate Arvo Paert's work. Exactly today I saw the film, the day of the 60 anniversary of Vargas suicide.

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