Goodbye Father (1996)

Director:Luís Filipe Rocha Producer:Tino Navarro Screenplay by:Luís Filipe Rocha  Music by:Delfins

Cinematography:João Abel Aboim  Edited by:Antonio Pérez Reina Running time:85 min Country:Portugal Language:Portuguese Genre:Drama   Subtitle:English  Starring:Afonso Pimentel ... Filipe, João Lagarto ... Manuel, Laura Soveral ... Dona Paula / Teacher,
Natália Luísa ... Mother
, Lourdes Norberto ... Grandmother, José Fanha ... Rodinhas, Adriana Aboim ... Joana, João Aboim ... Pedro,

Daniel Martinho ... Taxi Driver, Carlos Rodrigues ... Bum, Rosário Moreira ... Maid,Luka Ribeiro ... American Tourist









Golden Globes, Portugal 1997

Golden Globe
Best Actor
Afonso Pimentel 

For a 13-year-old boy like Filipe, the prospect of a summer vacation in the Azores with his father is like a dream come true. But dreams are sometimes just a way to avoid facing reality...

This must be one of the best known Portuguese films

15 July 2010 | by Atreyu_II (The world of artists)
I waited years to finally watch this movie. Finally my chance has come. I was hoping that someday I''d finally have access to it. Even though Portuguese cinema is widely unknown and forgotten (even in Portugal), this one in particular was the subject of some talking at its time.

The movie has a nice, interesting plot. If I wanted to resume it, I''d say that it is about a son who wishes to have a father who wants to have a son. But I will go into more detail.

The story is about a lonely 13 year old boy named Filipe, who never gets any attention from his father. When his father proposes a Summer vacation in Azores islands with his son, it seems unreal for the boy. Although Filipe is happy with this, he also can''t help thinking of the past and isn''t used to have the company of his father, so they feel like strangers to each other.

Inevitably, Filipe has many questions to ask his father. And he confesses everything: that he never wanted to have kids because he didn''t want to be attached to kids; that he suddenly realized that he''s got a 13 year old son who doesn''t know; and that he''s got a lung cancer and has only a few months of life.

Slowly, father and son get to know each other and Filipe starts making him lots of questions (including about sex and women). Plus, by meeting Joana (a girl who is taller and older than him) he experiences for the first time what it''s like to be in love.

When Filipe returns to Lisbon, his father doesn''t accompany him to the airport for a reason that makes you reflect: that to wave someone in a taxi is much easier than to wave someone at the airport because if you wave someone in a taxi you don''t have to say goodbye.

The movie has a very pretty song by Delfins ("Não vou ficar") and is well directed by Luís Filipe Rocha and the scenario is one thing in its favor: Azores are very green and natural islands. Their beauty and enchant are remarkable. There is something magical about Azores. And legend says that Azores are remainings of what once was the continent of Atlantis. I''ve never been to Azores, but I''d very much like to.

José Afonso Pimentel has a very convincing acting as Filipe. João Lagarto is okay as Filipe''s father.

Still, the movie doesn''t have enough strength to me to be considered a truly great movie. There are things about it that could have been better. But I won''t mention them here - I''m afraid I can''t give much of an explanation.

Even so, the movie doesn''t look like just a longer episode of some Portuguese soap-opera (as it happens in some of the very few Portuguese films I''ve seen so far). Plus, this movie is a mirror of Portuguese society of the late 1990''s and not of today''s Portuguese society, something that is greatly in its favor. Portuguese soap-operas of today are all about wickedness, violence, selfishness, greed and rudeness.