Inside Out 2023: Our Review of ‘Lobo e Cao’

Posted in Festival Coverage, Movies by - May 31, 2023
Inside Out 2023: Our Review of ‘Lobo e Cao’

It’s as if the whole island of Sao Miguel is attending the baptism of a child. The Portuguese island in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean is a community, with the occassional people flying in over or coming over through ship. Anyway, back to the church, the parishoners are polite enough but Lobo e Cao, or Wolf and Dog, makes us feel their boredom. Two of those bored parishoners are best friends. The first is Ana (Ana Cabral), whole life changes when a friend, Cloe (Cristiana Branquinho) flies to the island. The second is Luis (Ruben Pimenta), who is subject to homophobic attacks.

Wolf and Dog‘s impressionistic approach isn’t for everyone. It also feels like the film focuses slightly more on Luis’ storyline. Regardless of those nitpicks, it rewards its more patient viewers. The film shows that he is willing to participate in Sao Miguel more religious traditions even if it puts him in danger. It also shows that yes, those traditional situations can turn hostile in a dime, but that doesn’t depict homophobia as a total state within the island. It equally makes sense that there is a community of people like Ana to back him up.

Portuguese documentary filmmaker Cláudia Varejão directs this narrative film and eventually gives her delicate hand in depicting her two protagonists. Ana’s story is conflict free but thank God we have a 2SLGBT+ plot in a film that doesn’t make romance fussy. There’s also a lot of scenes where the protagonists party with drag queens and teens their own generation. And I didn’t mind that those scenes use arty gimmicks like slow motion to remind viewers of the carefreee youths we once were. Each closeup feels like a hug, intimate yet respectful, observing a generation who wants to find their selves.

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While Paolo Kagaoan is not taking long walks in shrubbed areas, he occasionally watches movies and write about them. His credentials are as follows: he has a double major in English and Art History. This means that, for example, he will gush at the art direction in the Amityville house and will want to live there, which is a terrible idea because that house has ghosts. Follow him @paolokagaoan on Instagram but not while you're working.
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