Alphaville: Journal of Film and Screen Media


Realistic Intermediality and the Historiography of the Present

Marcela Amaral


Abstract: This article tackles intermedial forms in the film O invasor (The Trespasser, Beto Brant, 2001), as it brings in diverse uses of media, predominantly connected to São Paulo’s hip-hop music and culture. I examine how intermediality can be used as a tool to explore the role of art forms within film space and to highlight a critical social view. The highly contrasted Brazilian social class stratum is illustrated using two distinct groups, namely the elite and the urban fringes. Music plays a relevant part in illustrating these divisions but also in exploring the complex notion and experience of border crossing. Analysing specific scenes that depict this division, I intend to examine the director’s decision to illustrate two distinct urban socioeconomic experiences through spatially driven visual and aural aesthetics. I will also aim to understand how the film opens a discursive space for exploring realism through unpredictable events that occur and are absorbed as a means to enhance the film’s atmosphere and narrative. This configuration sets an intriguing debate for the analysis of an intersection between realism and intermediality, or “realistic intermediality”, and a realism that promotes a collision between fiction and reality, producing a seemingly raw documentation of moments framed historically, socially and culturally.


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