Monday, May 27, 2019

Football + Puppies = Political Satire

Diamantino (2018) - Abrantes, Schmidt
Screen Shot 2019-05-27 at 9.10.20 AM
Gabriel Abrantes and Daniel Schmidt, a duo behind satirical shorts A History of Mutual Respect and Palace of Pity, comes up with another absurdist political satire Diamantino. It's one of those one joke comedies that you usually wouldn't think is sustainable as a feature in the beginning. But it succeeds in providing enough enjoyment whole throughout with the duo's usual lush film cinematography and visual effects and by following through with the silliness of the premise until the end.

Diamantino (Carloto Cotta, seen in Miguel Gomes' Tabu), is one of those impossibly good looking football superstar, a Portuguese national hero. But he turns out to be a sexless, brainless imbecile who lives in an opulent bubble and thinks of fluffy puppies when he is on the field. One day on his yacht with his beloved manager father and his two scheming evil twin sisters, he encounters a boat full of refugees from Africa. Our good hearted Diamantino has an epiphany: he will adopt an African boy and love him forever.

In the meantime, zealous government agents surveilling Diamantino for possible money laundering, sends agent Aisha (Cleo Tavares) to go undercover as the African boy to be adopted into Diamantino's estate despite objections from her fellow agent/lesbian lover Lucia. Diamantino spoils his newly adapted son (Aisha in cornrows and wrapped up boobies) with nutella desserts, sweet fruit soda called Bongo and all the toys any boys would want in an ornately decorated room in his castle. After killing their old father, the evil sisters who's been embezzling all his money to offshore accounts, makes a deal with Dr. Lamborgini and the nationalists to put Diamantino through gene experiments where the mad doctor wants to clone him and make the best football team in the world that will ultimately rile up enough Portuguese national pride in people to exit European Union. Still follow?

As one can expect, things go wrong. Diamantino grows pair of boobs, Aisha falls in love with him, the sisters finds out Aisha's identity...

Visually intoxicating and politically sharp, Diamantino is a fun movie to watch.