Mysteries of Lisbon
Screening in a theatrical version which premiered at the Melbourne International Film Festival, abridged from its original six-hour duration as a television mini-series, Raul Ruiz's masterful adaptation of the eponymous nineteenth century Portuguese novel shares the richly intertwined narrative structure also favoured by Balzac and Dickens.
Joao, the illegitimate child of a forbidden union among members of the aristocracy, longs to discover the truth about his parentage. His quest spans three decades in a journey through Portugal, Spain, France and Brazil, in which Joao's own fate intersects with the destinies of a multitude of richly drawn and enigmatic characters.
Ruiz received the Silver Shell for Best Director at the San Sebastian International Film Festival for Mysteries of Lisbon and was also the recipient of France's prestigious Louis Delluc Prize.