Adrift

Directed by Heitor Dhalia
  • Brazil
  • 103 minutes
  • 2009

One glorious summer in the early 1980s: a family leave Rio for a holiday on the Buzios beaches. Fourteen-year old Filipa (Neiva) is pretty and popular with her teenage pals, gossiping with the girls and innocently flirting with the boys. She discovers her parents have ulterior motives: her father Matias (Cassel), a writer struggling to finish his latest novel, is prone to lengthy, unexplained afternoon disappearances, while her mother Clarice (Bloch) hits the bottle heavily, picking fights with Matias given the slightest opportunity.

The holiday starts to look like a set-up, to distract from their disintegrating marriage, and Filipa struggles to comprehend how and why this is the case, while also coming to terms with her own burgeoning sexuality. A sophisticated, handsome melodrama of considerable class, Adrift confirms Heitor Dhalia’s reputation as one of the brightest talents emerging from South America.

Michael Hayden, London Film Festival Programme

Vincent Cassel, Débora Bloch, Camilla Belle, Laura Neiva