The Body Won't Close (2020)

  • Main Competition
  • 1h 14m


Our bodies are semi-permeable. All over the world, stories are being told about heroes who magically “close” their bodies, so as to become invincible. This film follows one such story, as it is told in Santo Amaro, Bahia (Brazil). Besouro Mangangà was a capoeira player, a black hero, who had closed his body. No bullets, no knives or daggers could pierce his skin. Bahian men explain how “closing the body” makes sense in their precarious and violent world, and why, in the end, this closure can never be accomplished. Soon the filmmaker realizes that his film is not only about the people in Bahia. He too is struggling with the porosity of his body, endlessly trying to strike a balance between shutting the world out and letting the world in.

Competing for the RAI Film Prize and Basil Wright Film Prize.

A live Q&A with the filmmaker(s) will take place on Zoom on Sunday 21 March, 19:00 - 19:25 UTC. Find a link to join the live discussion here.

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