Offense is the best defense: "Property" review

PROPERTY (2022) / International Competition
Daniel Bandeira
9.7 10:00, Moscow Cinema Blue Hall
12. 22:00, Moscow Cinema Blue Hall

A gust of anxiety and angst comes from Brazil in the form of Property, the second feature film by Daniel Bandeira, included in the Panorama section of this year’s Berlinale. A wrong word and a wrong move from the arrogant landowner lead to violence and soon all the workers in Teresa’s family estate are rebelling, demanding blood. Teresa, a traumatized victim of a hostage situation with a violent outcome, has no choice but to lock herself in her armored SUV. With no gas or phone signal, all she can do is wait for the right moment to flee.

The film is designed to be a classic social thriller, where everything gets out of hand in an instant. And yet, while with each scene the murderous workers are losing their human face, the script makes it clear that their outrage can be perceived as a desperate cry for help — offense as defense when a landowner’s unjust rule and demeanor basically result in modern-day slavery.

Artur Vardikyan