Ivo Ferreira wraps Cartas da Guerra
by Vitor Pinto
- The film adapts António Lobo Antunes’ letters sent to his wife during the Colonial War; newcomer Miguel Nunes plays the lead role
Portuguese director Ivo Ferreira is wrapping principal photography for his new feature, Cartas da Guerra [+see also:
Q&A: Ivo M Ferreira
film profile] (lit. “War Letters”) in a military camp in Alcochete. This is the second and final leg of the shoot, which kicked off in Angola last May.
Produced by Luís Urbano for O Som e a Fúria (Arabian Nights [+see also:
interview: Miguel Gomes
film profile]), Cartas da Guerra is based on a book by renowned Portuguese author António Lobo Antunes. The epistolary novel, published in 2005, brings together the letters of a young soldier that were sent to his wife from Angola between 1971 and 1973, during the Colonial War. Just like Lobo Antunes himself, the young soldier is a doctor and an aspiring writer.
The director is penning the novel’s adaptation along with scriptwriter Edgar Medina, capturing the very essence of the correspondence and painting the portrait of a young man deprived of his family, stuck in what seemed to be a never-ending conflict.
Ferreira, who has been based in Macao for the last five years, had not been attached to a feature-length project since his feature debut, April Showers, in 2009.
Set to open domestically in 2016, Cartas da Guerra is the most recent instance of Portuguese cinema looking back at the country’s colonial wounds. Other films addressing the same topic include Manoel de Oliveira’s No, or the Vain Glory of Command, Joaquim Leitão’s unfinished war trilogy Hell and 20, 13 - Purgatory, and Margarida Cardoso’s The Murmuring Coast.