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Brasileirinho Review

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This introduction to Brazilian choro centres on Rio’s leading musicians and singers

★★★★★

A music documentary in the Buena Vista Social Club tradition, this introduction to Brazilian choro centres on Rio’s leading musicians and singers. Director Mika Kaurismäki departs from the deeper analysis of his Sound Of Brazil (2002), so anyone unfamiliar with this forerunner to samba and bossa nova will be none the wiser about its history or place in Brazilian culture.

But despite only occasional reference being made to African rhythm and Brazilian Indian melancholy, the performances of bands like Trio Madeira Brasil, the guitarist Yamandú Castro and such divas as Zezé Gonzaga are vibrant, and poignantly capture the diverse spirit of the form.

The music on show is superb - but the lack of an historical context deprives viewers of a full cultural appreciation of the Brazilian charo.