Sao Jerônimo

  • 78'
  • Brazil
  • 1999
In his press material, Júlio Bressane described Saint Hieronymus (Sao Jerônimo) as a great film-maker. What can he have meant? Why should a learned, religious and ascetic-living early Christian (he lived in the fourth century in an area that has changed its name many times as a result of countless Balkan wars) be described as a cineaste? It may be related to the fact that Bressane followed this lover of classic texts, who was alleged by church leaders at the time to read the wrong books, in his self-sacrifice: If Hieronymus withdraws into a fantastic and bare landscape that evokes irresistibly beautiful images. And maybe also because Bressane takes the visions of Hieronymus very seriously, even engendering surrealist elements in this stern and stylish film. Hieronymus is to go on trial. He has to choose between his beloved Greek and Roman philosophers or dedicating himself entirely to the Holy Scriptures. In his famous vision, he fights against doubt. He withdraws into the desert where he meets other scholars (and later saints). Bressane uses sober means, but great invention, to evoke the concrete and spiritual world of Saint Hieronymus in a very original, extremely stylish and also very funny film. A film that meticulously follows the indestructible old texts and also achieves great visual purity. And a film to make one curious about the earlier films of Bressane, that can be seen this year in this special Focus programme.
Director
Júlio Bressane
Country of production
Brazil
Production Year
1999
Festival Edition
IFFR 2000
Length
78'
Medium
35mm
Language
Portuguese
Producers
Júlio Bressane, TB Produções
Sales
Riofilme
Screenplay
Júlio Bressane
Editor
Virginia Flores
Cast
Helena Ignez