DER Documentary

On Edge - á Flor da Pele

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by Catarina Mourão
color, 64 min, 2006
produced by Laranja Azul / North-West Documentaries

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The film focuses on daily life in a poor housing estate in Porto and, in particular, on a group of children aged between 8 and 14. It follows their life outdoors always inventing new games. Parents are seldom home and children have space and freedom to create their own rules, games of power many times copying the models they know from home. Sometimes things get really tough, other times there is a feeling of harmony and melancholy in the neighbourhood.

This is a special summer: people are expecting the European Football Cup and the possible victory of the Portuguese team will raise the morale of a country in full recession. Kids and adults are hypersensitive, feelings go over the top. TVs are put outdoors and the games of the European cup are followed by children and adults as an almost religious ritual.

Rui, one of the characters is a 13 year old boy who unlike all the other kids of his age doesn't like football and fighting. He prefers to take refuge in a dream like world surrounded by dinosaurs and other animals from the forest.

"The European Football championship in 2004 is the framework for this extraordinary film which is really about the universe of a group of 8-14 year-olds living in a poor neighbourhood of Porto. With a sure touch, the camera sensitively captures a string of episodic pearls in the children's daily lives, which convey much about what is essential to them: friendships, the opposite sex, families and uncertain future. The way the scenes unfold in an artful framing of shots and the close relation to the kids makes it a pleasure to watch." — Ulla Jacobsen, DOX magazine (DOX #62 January 2006)

Film Festivals, Screenings, Awards
NAFA film Festival Copenhagen, May 2005 (work-in-progress)
Tartu World Film Festival, March 2006
Indie Lisboa International Film Festival, 2006
Gottingen International Film Festival, 2006
1er rencontres internationales cinZma et sport de Montréal, 2006
Doc's Kingdom, International Documentary Seminar, Portugal, 2006
Sixth Festival of Visual Culture, Viscult. Joensuu, Finland 2006
3rd Moscow International Visual Anthropology Festival and Conference, Russia, 2006
Best Film in the International Competition, Belo Horizonte, Brazil
International Festival of Ethnological Film, Belgrade, Serbia, 2007
European Association of Social Anthropologists' Film, Video & New Media Festival, Slovenia, 2008
Sardinia International Ethnographic Film Festival, Italy, 2008

Related Resources
Laranja Azul

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