Berlinale: An Outpost of Progress ( Posto avançado do progresso )

An Outpost of Progress (Posto avançado do progresso)
Directed by Hugo Vieira Da Silva
Starring Nuno Lopes and Ivo Alexandre

by Malin Arvidsson

Two inexperienced Portuguese colonizers arrive in the Congo to take charge of a trading post focusing on the Ivory trade.  They’re not used to the hot climate and the traditions of the local people – their white uniforms really stand out.  In the beginning they seem to enjoy themselves, but the longer time goes on, the more crazy they seem to become from the isolation, heat, diseases and other troubles that they need to deal with. As the characters in the film go more and more crazy, the film also gets more out of hand which really transmits the feeling of the characters’ journey.

The film portrays the feeling of what it could have been like for colonizers posted in the Congo and it is definitely an interesting narrative angle.  I quite enjoyed the beginning of it, but towards the end it goes a little too crazy. For example, at some point there is just a black screen where you see dialogue written with no sound or other visuals. And then the film continues as before.

Overall, An Outpost of Progress is an interesting concept turned into a film that gets completely out of hand.


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