Come, see what we're doing even if you don't like the theater, says Jeanne Balibar, a French actress and singer. A friend of Costa's, she is revered by the director. Completely naturally, as if in passing, what results is a film that is not a film, a collage of fragments from rehearsals, concerts, studio recordings and even singing lessons and theatrical performances, images of work on an album. The protagonists, Balibar and musician Rodolphe Burger and his band, emerge from the darkness; lit in an expressionistic fashion, they appear so stylish and beautiful, and the subtlety of their talent shines through. Faces hidden in the shadows, constantly shifting glances, silhouettes emerging from the background, voices, music, murmurs ... We tried to extract something from beneath the surface of the film, not even the story, something more, something about fear, about light and darkness, Costa says. This isn't even a documentary about work, but rather about trying to achieve something, about entering the circle of the initiated. The source of this impression appears to be Jeanne's sensitivity, her being lost and her feeling of constantly being out of place, both in the opera and among these guys, these professional musicians. This is a film about form; it takes on the form of Jeanne.
Born in Lisbon (1959), he left his course of studies in History to attend classes taught by the poet and filmmaker António Reis at the Lisbon Film School. His first film Blood (O Sangue) had its world premiere at the Mostra Cinematografica di Venezia in 1989. Casa de Lava, his second feature, shot in Cabo Verde, was shown in Cannes, in 1994. Some of his other feature films include Bones (Ossos), In Vanda's Room (No Quarto da Vanda) and Where Does Your Hidden Smile Lie? (Où gît votre sourire enfoui?) on the work of Danièle Huillet and Jean-Marie Straub. He directed Sweet Exorcist, a segment of the omnibus feature Centro Histórico, with Manoel de Oliveira, Aki Kaurismäki and Víctor Erice. His work has been presented in galeries and museums around the world. Horse Money (Cavalo Dinheiro) was awarded the Leopard for best direction at the Locarno International Film Festival in 2014.
1987 Cartas a Julia (short)
1990 Krew / O Sangue / Blood
1994 Dom z lawy / Casa de Lava / Down to Earth
1997 Kości / Ossos / Bones
2000 W pokoju Wandy / No Quarto da Vanda / In Vanda's Room
2001 Danièle Huillet, Jean-Marie Straub, cinéastes (odcinek Cinéastes, de notre temps, TV serie)
2002 Gdzie spoczywa twój uśmiech? / Onde Jaz o Teu Sorriso? / Où gît votre sourire enfoui? / Where Does Your Hidden Smile Lie?
2003 6 bagatelas (short)
2006 Pochód młodości / Juventude Em Marcha / Colossal Youth
2007 Tarrafal (short in O Estado do Mundo / The State of the World)
2007 Łowcy królików / The Rabbit Hunters (short in Memories, Jeonju Digital Project)
2009 Ne change rien
2010 O Nosso Homem / Our Man (short)
2012 Słodki egzorcysta / Sweet Exorcist / Lamento da Vida Jovem (short in Centro Histórico)
2014 Koń Forsa / Cavalo Dinheiro / Horse Money
2018 Vitalina Varela