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(aka "Gabriel e a Montanha" or "Gabriel et la montagne")


directed by Fellipe Barbosa
Portuguese/English/French 2017


Director Fellipe Barbosa (CASA GRANDE) casts professional actors Joćo Pedro Zappa and Caroline Abras to reconstruct the last two months in the life of school friend Gabriel Buchmann, a finance student who took off a year in 2009 before graduate school for sustainable travel to research poverty in Africa only to disappear in the mountains of Malawi and be discovered weeks after the search having died of exposure. Traveling to Africa, Barbosa recruits several people who actually met, traveled with, and provided hospitality to Buchmann - many of whom were unaware of his death at the time or even when Barbosa met them despite their access to social media - to help tell his story. We meet Buchmann (Zappa) staying with a Masai family and being made an honorary tribesman and taught to hunt. He continues on his travels before reconnecting with his girlfriend Cristina (Abras) whom he escorts on the more conventionally tourist-y diversions like safaris, museums, and the market. Although this may arguably seem like a commercial concession of tourist board scenery and some sex scenes, it also introduces some depth into Buchmann's character, characterized by Cristina as a neocon who might not have been interested in poverty at all had he not failed to get into Harvard and had to settle for UCLA. These scenes which show Buchmann boastful of his traveling experiences and haggling with tourist venues about charges show a boorish side of him. When Cristina departs and Buchmann is left alone, he finds it as difficult as the viewer to get back into the rhythms and routines of sustainable tourism with his search for reciprocal services seeming like he is asking for handouts. One even starts to wonder if his impulsiveness and reckless decisions as he scales the mountain are a reflection of that side of his character we saw during the second act or part of some sort of death wish when he felt like he had failed to get into Harvard (having boasted to Cristina of having been educated in the best schools throughout his life). While the film does not attempt to portray Gabriel in the same manner as the press at the time, it does show that he left a generally good impression on those he encountered along the way in spite of what may have happened in his final days.

Eric Cotenas


Theatrical Release: 30 August 2017 (France)

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DVD Review: Strand Releasing - Region 1 - NTSC

Big thanks to Eric Cotenas for the Review!

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Strand Releasing

Region 1 - NTSC

Runtime 2:11:32

2.33:1 Original Aspect Ratio

16X9 enhanced
Average Bitrate: 7.8 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/English/French Dolby Digital 5.1
Subtitles English, English SDH, none
Features Release Information:
Studio: Strand Releasing

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen anamorphic - 2.33:1

Edition Details:
� Theatrical Trailer (1:48)
� Trailers

DVD Release Date: October 16th, 2018

Chapters 8



Strand Releasing really should have considered this as a Blu-ray title as the Red Dragon-leansed film is bursting with colorful and exotic scenery that the standard definition, progressive, anamorphic transfer does its best to render (it is not confirmed if the French Blu-ray is English-friendly). The Dolby Digital 5.1 track is front-oriented for much of its talkiness while using the surrounds for atmosphere in the city scenes and more subtly in the countryside. Optional English subtitles translate the Portuguese and French dialogue while the SDH subtitles also transcribe the accented English. The only extras are the film's trailer and trailers for four other films.

  - Eric Cotenas


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Strand Releasing

Region 1 - NTSC



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