In December, Manoel De Oliveira (1908, Portugal) had his hundredth birthday, while he was shooting his 46th feature. De Oliveira is the only filmmaker still alive who worked in the period of the silent film. In the first 40 years of his career, he largely filmed documentaries and only three features, partly as a result of the political situation in Portugal. With an energy and creativity that is exceptional for a man of his age, he has in recent years made an average of one film a year. Non, ou a vã glória de mandar (1990), Vale Abraão (1993) and Je rentre a la maison (2002) have definitively given him a place, according to many critics, among Europe's film greats such as Bergman, Antonioni and Bresson.
De Oliveira's film début is a visually stunning documentary poem about life and work along the principal river of the director's native Porto region. Greatly admired by critics and artists such as Luigi Pirandello, Douro, faina fluvial reveals De Oliveira's incredible eye and sense of rhythm. Although Hollywood had already ushered in the arrival of sound cinema in 1927, Portugal's film industry remained decidedly underdeveloped and continued to produce silent films into the early 1930s. (Harvard Film Archive)

Filmmaker
Manoel de Oliveira
Country
Portugal
Year
1931
Medium
35mm
Length
18’
Language
no dialogue
Production Company
M O Films, Lda
Sales
M O Films, Lda
Writer
Manoel de Oliveira
Editor
Manoel de Oliveira