Boasting the presence of Brazilian icon Sônia Braga and cult favorite Udo Kier, Kleber Mendonça Filho and Juliano Dornelles’s Bacurau was primed for a successful theatrical launch in the U.S. The off-kilter project had earned positive notices at last year’s Cannes Film Festival, drumming up enthusiasm in the months that followed. Every one who saw it knew that this Brazilian Western was unlike anything else out there. With hints of The Twilight Zone and driven by the same kind of class consciousness that drove Mendonça Filho and Braga’s previous collaboration (the brilliant Aquarius) Bacurau is a tour de force genre film that begins with the death of a 94 year-old matriarch, hinges on the disappearance of the town of Bacurau from GPS systems and quickly morphs into a kind of home invasion film where foreigners (including the aforementioned Kier) are intent on hunting as many of these seemingly backward townspeople as possible in what looks like a high stakes game. Only, of course, things take a deliciously bloody turn.
A thrilling social parable for contemporary politics — in Brazil specifically but with enough universality to have it feel familiar enough abroad — Bacurau is the kind of non-English language film primed to find a devout audience in the United States. Only, by the time it opened in select theaters at the beginning of March, the inhabitants of Bacurau found themselves fighting an enemy even they couldn’t fend off: the Coronavirus pandemic. As more and more movie theaters shuttered, it seemed like Mendonça Filho and Dornelles’s critically acclaimed film would see its theatrical release evaporate. Except its U.S. distributor, Kino Lorber, had other plans. Enter: Kino Lorber Marquee, a program designed to emulate the moviegoing experience as much as possible, enabling movie audiences to support their local theaters by paying to view films digitally.
Kino Lorber President and CEO Richard Lorber said, “We’ve all been thrust into a brave new cinema world. Kino Marquee offers film lovers and the theaters a way to mutually support each other — audiences can keep going to newly released movies and theaters can keep selling tickets to great cinematic experiences online. We offer Kino Marquee as a lifeline to help keep art house cinemas in business and keep the work of top independent filmmakers under the halo of first release virtual screens.”
So if you’re in the mood to watch a pissed off Sônia Braga take on Udo Kier in a high-octane wild ride all the while making sure your favorite indie theaters across the U.S. stay afloat during this crisis, take some time to catch Bacurau from the comfort of your own home.
Bacurau is now playing in select virtual theaters across the U.S.