Lisbon & Estoril Film Festival


JOSÉ VIEIRA : A Selected Retrospective

The LEFFEST – Lisbon & Sintra Film Festival’17 will screen a retrospective of the work of José Vieira, a director of Portuguese origin and a pioneer author of a singular yet still insufficiently known filmography, dedicated to the problem of emigration, particularly the exodus of thousands of Portuguese to France, in the 60s, in its majority done in a clandestine way.

Born in Oliveira de Frades, José Vieira leaves for France in 1965, when he was seven years old. From 1985 on, boosted by the political transformations in Portugal and by the social movements in support of the immigrants, he directs around thirty documentaries for the channels France 2, France 3, Cinquième and Arte, drawing a portrait of the immigration in France, based on his personal experience and on the individual stories he knew about.  

The huge hardships felt by the Portuguese immigrants – the life on the slums, the employers’ scams, the discrimination and the despair they felt – enticed José Vieira to reconstruct a collective memory and a shared story by all those people, independently of their origin, explaining the reasons why they left the country to fight for a better life.


La photo déchirée / A Fotografia Rasgada, 2002
Le pays où l'on ne revient jamais / O País Aonde Nunca se Regressa, 2005
Les émigrés / Os Emigrantes, 2009
Le drôle de mai, 2008
Le pain que le diable a pétri / O Pão que o Diabo Amassou, 2012
Le bateau en carton, 2010
Souvenirs d'un futur radieux, 2014
L'île des absents, 2016
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