Andrea BARATA RIBEIRO (O2 films), Vania CATANI (Bananeira filmes)
Animal Race is an action film, with an innovative esthetic, developed from the experience that was initiated with the short film “A Espera” (The Waiting, 2002), in which real actors are inserted in a virtual universe. We are set in the near future in an imaginary Rio de Janeiro city. It is odd, but easily recognizable. There is an illegal and widely popular game, known as “Animal Race”, a violent dispute in which the losers become slaves for the winners. The game is part of the daily life of the city’s inhabitants and it is through these two elements – the game and the slavery – that the film explores the power relations in the contemporary world. Mano is the best player of all time and he does about everything to be accepted in the upper-class of this society. However, he commits a fatal mistake when he bets his own daughter in order to take revenge on Nadine, a sophisticated upper-class woman whom he loves, but who despises him. Many years later, ruined and regretful, he gets another chance of recovering his daughter, by playing one last time. Unfortunately, he is not the same player of the old times and he loses that race. In the end, he even finds out that he is now a slave for his own daughter, whom he was fighting for.