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The Green Years
(Os Verdes Anos)

Directed by Paulo Rocha.
With Rui Gomes, Isabel Ruth, Ruy Furtado.
Portugal, 1963, DCP, black & white, 89 min.
Portuguese with English subtitles.
DCP source: Grasshopper Films

The opening salvo of the Cinema Novo that would reinvent post-WWII Portuguese cinema, Paulo Rocha’s debut film is equally a touching coming-of-age narrative and an unintended documentary about the rebirth of Lisbon as a modern city. Shot on location and with a deep lyricism, Os Verdes Anos was also the film that launched Isabel Ruth’s still incredibly vibrant career as the most important Portuguese actress of her generation or any other. Seen now in a wonderful restoration, Rocha’s melancholy and classic master work offers an important reminder that Portuguese cinema has for too long been unrecognized and occluded from film history. – Haden Guest

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