(aka 'How Tasty Was My Little Frenchman')

Directed by Nelson Pereira dos Santos
Brazil 1971


  I can't say whether this 1971 feature is the best film by Brazilian master Nelson Pereira dos Santos, the father of Cinema Novo, but it's the first one I saw, and it left the strongest impression. It describes the complex interactions between a French adventurer and a Tupinamba Indian tribe and charts a brilliantly comic and highly ironic ethnographic analysis of both; almost the entire cast is naked, and the overall message is that probably the only way the Frenchman can truly be absorbed by the tribe is nutritively. A must-see.

Excerpt from Jonathan Rosenbaum's review at the Chicago Reader located HERE

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Theatrical Release: June 1971 - Berlin Film Festival

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DVD Review: New Yorker Video - Region 1 - NTSC

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Distribution New Yorker Video - Region 1 - NTSC
Runtime 1:19:54 
Video 1.33:1 Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: 5.6 mb/s
NTSC 720x480 29.97 f/s 

NOTE: The Vertical axis represents the bits transferred per second. The Horizontal is the time in minutes.


Audio Portuguese / Tupi / French  (Dolby Digital 2.0) 
Subtitles English, None

Release Information:
Studio: New Yorker Video

Aspect Ratio:
Original Aspect Ratio 1.33:1

Edition Details:

• Interview with Richard Pena (9:26)
• Interview with Aílton, a member of the Krenak tribe  (11:45) 

DVD Release Date: May 8th, 2007

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Chapters: 12




This is a relatively poor image from this NY'er DVD. Good news is that it is not from a PAL transfer (Brazil being NTSC - Pereira dos Santos collection) and does appear to be progressive (no 'combing' in horizontal pans) although single-layered and it is quite murky in spots. Colors tend to run a bit. I have no reason  to believe that this is not how the master looks though. The, mostly Portuguese, dialogue is similarly basic but the package is support by optional English subtitles. It is quite suitable for CRT (tube) viewing.

There are two interviews as supplements - NY Film Prof Rich Pena and another longer one with Aílton, a member of the Krenak tribe. Pena is very good albeit short in his comments and Aílton's intentions seem to alert us to some political injustices. Overall though a commendable effort in extras by NY'er.  The film is very interesting indeed. I believe the first I may have seen from Pereira dos Santos... and I wish to see more. At least with the screen captures you know what you are getting into and you will be very pleasantly surprised by the unique and charming impact of the film. 

Gary W. Tooze



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Distribution New Yorker Video - Region 1 - NTSC


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