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Directed by Pedro Costa • 1997 • France, Netherlands, Portugal
The first film in Pedro Costa's transformative trilogy about Fontainhas, an impoverished quarter of Lisbon, OSSOS is a tale of young lives torn apart by desperation. After a suicidal teenage girl gives birth, she misguidedly entrusts her baby's safety to the troubled, deadbeat father, whose violent actions take the viewer on a tour of the foreboding, crumbling shantytown in which they live. With its reserved, shadowy cinematography by Emmanuel Machuel (who collaborated with Bresson on L'argent), OSSOS is a haunting look at a devastated community.