The House of Sand
Autumn 2006 Edge series
Sunday, December 3, 2006 at 4:00pm
Directed by Andrucha Waddington
Starring Fernanda Torres, Fernanda Montenegro, Ruy Guerra, Camilla Facundes, Enrique Diaz, Stenio Garcia, Seu Jorge
Rated NR ·
In 1910, Vasco de Sá (Ruy Guerra) leads his pregnant wife, Áurea (Fernanda Torres), and her mother, Dona Maria (Fernanda Montenegro, Central Station), to their new home — a ramshackle cabin in Maranhão, a tiny village in the middle of a barren sand dune. When Vasco unexpectedly dies, Áurea and Dona Maria are left to fend for themselves.
Nine years later, Áurea and Dona Maria have turned their cottage into a home, but life in Maranhão remains a constant uphill battle, and Áurea dreams of moving away with her daughter, Maria (Camilla Facundes). She becomes infatuated with Luiz (Enrique Diaz), who works with a group of astronomers who have come to Maranhão to observe an eclipse, but their romance comes to a crashing halt with the death of Dona Maria. By 1942, Maria (now played by Fernanda Torres) is a promiscuous alcoholic who brings shame to Áurea (now played by Fernanda Montenegro). After the body of an Air Force pilot is found near Maranhão, a military officer is sent to investigate — Luiz (now played by Stenio Garcia). When Luiz meets Maria, he sees the image of the woman he longed for years before, and while she doesn’t have the same feelings for him, Maria realizes that Luiz represents her best hope of finally escaping the village she’s come to hate.
House of Sand is Andrucha Waddington’s first feature-length fiction film since his award-winning Me You Them. Filmed entirely in the magnificent Lençóis Maranhenses region (an environmental conservation area in the north Brazilian State of Maranhão), it features Fernanda Montenegro and Fernanda Torres, two of the most renowned actresses of Brazil and real-life mother and daughter, together for the first time in the film’s leading roles.