A few years after making Bossa Nova, Bruno Barreto directed this Brazilian comedy, O Casamento de Romeu e Julieta, which is another, even better, soccer date movie.
Romeo is the leader of a Corinthians fan club that includes his hysterically fanatical grandmother. In order to be accepted by Juliet’s father, who is the equally fanatic club chairman of Palmeiras, Romeo pretends to be a fan of the arch rivals even though doing so makes him physically ill.
There are some very nice touches in this movie. Juliet’s father has trained her with a soccer ball from birth, so she is a womens soccer coach. When she and Romeo compare their soccer scars on their first date, it leads to a passionate kiss. But Romeo is unable to consummate their passion when surrounded by Palmeiras logos.
Director Barreto included documentary footage of fans in the São Paulo Pacaembu Stadium which, along with the staged fan reactions, portrays a real sense of futbol passion. He used 600 real Palmeiras and Corinthians fans in the wedding scene, with each side displaying their tifo over the church pews.
Barreto also reenacted actual gameplay from 1999, using players who look like the original stars from a birds eye view. In that year, Palmeiras went to Tokyo to play in the Toyota Cup against ManU. This footage is displayed on a small TV screen so that he did not have to reenact that game.
The acting is tremendous, the characters are all engaging, and the story is a creative endearing soccer interpretation of the normally tragic Shakespearan theme. I don’t know why this movie is so unrecognized, because it certainly deserves two soccer-scarred thumbs up!
The DVD includes a making of featurette and directory/cast commentary. Based on the director & cast commentary, it sounds like this movie might be funnier than they intended.
Around the time of this movie, Bruno Barreto and Amy Irving divorced, but I think she has a cameo at the end of this film.
In Portuguese with English subtitles.
8 Soccer Movie Mom Rating = 8
Release Date: 2005-03-18 (Brasil)
Director: Bruno Barreto