By Eva Paulino Bueno (auth.)
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Additional info for Amácio Mazzaropi in the Film and Culture of Brazil: After Cinema Novo
Then there are mechanical objects, whose expected function should be to establish a division between human and nonhuman. However, as we will see in the discussion of individual films, these human-machine boundaries are presented in terms similar to those used to discuss the social constructs that help differentiate humans from animals. The hero in Mazzaropi’s films becomes similar to the hero in romance, who, as Fredric Jameson writes, is made over into something like a registering apparatus for transformed states of being, sudden alterations of temperature, mysterious heightenings, local intensities, sudden drops of quality, and alarming effluvia, in short the whole semic range of transformation scenes whereby, in romance, higher and lower worlds struggle to overcome each other.
To summarize the rest of the story: Izidoro leaves the tenement and goes to town to work, helping people move things from place to place. His first customer hires him to take his furniture to Santos. After the truck is loaded, Izidoro stops at a grocery store to call a doctor for Clarinha. In the meantime, the truck starts moving by itself. When Izidoro comes out of the grocery store, both the truck and Coroné are not where he had left them. In panic, Izidoro embarks in a series of bureaucratic adventures in his search for them.
The hidden text here implies that Izidoro’s identity is more complex than it might seem at first sight. His friendship with his dog and with his truck shows us a man who is not quite sure whether he belongs in the animal or in the mechanical world. To make things even more complicated, the fact that the dog’s “wife” has a name, Clarinha, and Izidoro’s wife does not implies that this obscurity runs deep even in his family. Izidoro’s true identity—man or animal or machine—remains to be dramatized all over again in the next film.