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From Beginning to End [DVD]
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One of the most controversial gay-themed films since Cruising, this Brazilian romantic drama centers on the intimate bond between two men made problematic with them being brothers. As children, Francisco and his younger half-brother Thomás, were best friends and unusually close to each other- so much so that their intimacy brings vocal concerns from relatives that maybe they are too close. But the parents reluctantly brush away the gossip. Fast-forward several years with the now strikingly handsome, bronzed young men taking their childhood intensity into a torrid sexual relationship. But can their love survive society s discerning gaze? Spectacularly shot amidst the mountains, beaches and grand estates of Brazil, this sweeping erotic drama does not just live on the controversial subject matter but rather is a strikingly evocative romance of two men fighting against societal conventions.
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Top Customer Reviews
The first half of the film shows a modern family where the adults, each in their own time, discover that the boys' relationship is resembling something other than a "normal" brother-brother banter. I think it is particularly well acted in each case where the audience can actually read the minds of the characters simply by observing their facial expressions and body language. The actors are so atuned to their roles that the writers were able to save themselves reams of dialogue simply by having the characters summon responses to their thoughts. Honestly, these are performances worthy of the Actors' Studio. The film might have been much longer and with additional drama within the timeline of the large gaps in time which occur in the middle of the film. It occurs to me that something must have happened to alert the boys to the unusual nature of their relationship. In the after-glow bed scene Tom-Tom says: "...to understand our love they would have to turn the world upside down...", indicating that they are aware of the danger of exposure.
But the real body of the film is in the emotional journey of the boys. The depth of their emotion and the delicate nature of their dependance on one another.Read more ›
Aluizio Abranches' film is a study of two brothers growing up in a comfortably well-off family in Brazil; the mother, a doctor and the father, an artist. We witness the boys - Francisco and Thomás - growing up, from Thomás' birth through until the boys' twenties.
It's slow and meandering, progressively building a picture of an unusually intense bond between the brothers, against a backdrop of some very handsome cinematography, and an impressive musical score. It's subtle, and understated, but a journey nonetheless, and one punctuated with sudden, startling visceral thrills (yes, there is sex and nudity).
"To understand our love," Francisco, the older brother, says at one point, "they'd have to turn the world upside down."
Hugely profound, his words instantly, and almost certainly, renders the entire audience as a pitchfork-wielding mob, à la Frankenstein. It forces those of us who are fuming, sniggering, or otherwise judging to pause and reflect, and begs the question, "Could any of us possibly understand?"
The picture perfect Cosby Show set-up works equally well for the film as it does against it - we, the audience, constantly anticipate the dark forces of an unforgiving outside world tearing their world apart. Much of the film's audience will similarly be wishing for a moral denouement that sets the boys "straight".Read more ›
The first third of DO COMEÇO AO FIM focuses on the tenderness of the brothers' early lives, when Francisco is 12-years-old and Thomás 6. The two are actually half-brothers; they live with their mother in Brazil, but Francisco's father lives in Argentina. Despite this marital restructuring, the mother and father remain on good terms, and the portrait is one of a deeply loving and affectionate family. Nowhere is this more evident than between the brothers...
Francisco adores and protects the younger Thomás, while the latter idolises the former. Their mother senses the intimacy that already exists between them, which perhaps accounts for her wistful (yet accepting) sadness towards a love from which she will forever be excluded. Francisco's father in Argentina, too, suspects that their relationship is "too intimate"; in response to his suggestion that they talk to the boys, their mother responds: "I don't know exactly what they are doing... But we cannot tell them it is a bad thing." Refreshing, indeed.
The film jumps ahead fifteen years; both their mother and Francisco's father have died, and the brothers, now in their 20s, continue to live together - their love, affection and physicality undiminished.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
So all of a sudden the brothers realise they are attracted to each other, drop their clothes and have sex in the living room of their parents just because their mum died...What??Published 3 months ago by Silly01
I love this...I love my taboo in my books and this was just so lovingly done.....No one should feel bad for who they love....truly amazing film xPublished 4 months ago by sue bowdley
well, well, well - nude bodies are all right, the rest... why not? live and let livePublished 4 months ago by Serge Egres
The sexiest gay love story I ever saw on film especially with that curly headed beauty and his gorgeous eyes. Read morePublished 5 months ago by Tom(C)
Disappointing. Given the potential of subject matter I was expecting a taunt drama dealing with the issues. Read morePublished 6 months ago by Mr O
A tender and gentle story, romantic yet also passionate. It has a wonderfully fulfilling ending and the photography and acting are way above average... Read morePublished 6 months ago by More than what meets the eye!
Good film , but not for the light hearted . Felt a bit awkward as have boys and I didn't like the fact of that . But aside that and quilt of liking it . Good filmPublished 6 months ago by mum