Tito e os Pássaros
Director: Gabriel Bitar, André Catoto, Gustavo Steinberg
Writer: Eduardo Benaim, Gustavo Steinberg
Cast: Denise Fraga, Pedro Henrique, Matheus Nachtergaele, Mateus Solano
Part of: /slash Filmfestival
Seen on: 27.9.2018
Tito (Pedro Henrique) is the son of scientist Dr. Rufus (Matheus Nachtergaele). Rufus is working on the cure for a disease that is affecting more and more people: they get scared and then they turn into blobs of fear, unable to do anything anymore. Rufus believes that the answer lies in re-learning to communicate with birds who used to warn people of impending dangers. And Tito is committed to help him find the solution.
Tito e os Pássaros is a beautifully animated film that wields its message like a sledgehammer. It may not be subtle, but looking at the world right now, we’re past subtlety anyway.
The first thing you’ll notice about the film is it’s animation style. It’s unusual in the design of the characters as much as the way backgrounds are being handled. Kept in bright colors and with visible brushstrokes, they are the eye-catching setting for stylized, yet realistic characters. The result is absolutely stunning and one of the more unusual animated films I have come across.
The second thing is the story itself. This film has something to say and it will not try to mince words or dress up its message in fancy allegories. No, there is no time for that. Instead it will tackle the spread of fascism and its ties to capitalism pretty directly, making good points in a way that they are accessible even to children.
Now, watching this film is an adult, this direct approach – although of course it is not metaphor/allegory-free – may feel heavy-handed, but this is a children’s film after all, so I’m very willing to forgive that. Especially since the message is important and people (even adults) don’t seem to get it anyway when it’s even the slightest bit dressed up, so, go for it, film, go for it. The part with the birds was unusual and probably the bit where I am not sure if I agree: a return to nature may not be the answer to fascism, but then again, ecological activism does seem the way to push people to the left, so…
Anyway, the part I was least happy about was the treatment of the female characters: there aren’t many to begin with and then they are quickly turned into victims. But other than that, Tito and the Birds is a wonderful film that I would watch again in a heartbeat.