Tripti Joshi (Editor)

Ricardo Costa (filmmaker)

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Full Name  Ricardo Costa
Name  Ricardo Costa
Years active  1974–present

Occupation  Filmmaker
Nationality  Portuguese
Role  Film director
Ricardo Costa (filmmaker) 2bpblogspotcom1WdBt8AAWOoU8wcl3z56JIAAAAAAA
Born  25 January 1940 (age 75) (1940-01-25) Peniche, Portugal
Movies  Mists, Cravos de Abril, Drifts, Changing Tides
Similar People  Rogerio Paulo, Helena Isabel, Adelaide Joao

Ricardo Costa (born 25 January 1940) is a Portuguese film director and producer. He is the author of essays on cinema, vision, and language.


Ricardo Costa (filmmaker) Ricardo Costa filmmaker Wikipedia


Most of his filmography consists of documentary films, pure cinéma vérité. Many include fiction elements (docufiction and ethnofiction). He uses the techniques of direct cinema not only as a tool for practising salvage ethnography but also as a means to compose sober, "musical" and poetic narratives, interesting cinephiles and suitable for common audiences.

Mists (Brumas), his penultimate film, was selected for the 60th Venice Film Festival, New Territories (2003) and premiered in New York, 2011, at the Quad Cinema. It is the first film of an auto-biographic docufiction trilogy on time and human wanderings: Faraways (Longes). Drifts (Derivas), the second one, a comedy, released in Portugal, January 2016, is "a portrait of Lisbon drawn through the peregrinations of two unfit venerable brothers across the city". The third and last film of the sequel is Cliffs (Arribas), film in post-production, in which the protagonist goes back to his homeland via time travel. There he will face disquieting situations and puzzling characters.

Unlike most Portuguese films, all the films by Ricardo Costa have been made with no state funds and very low budgets.


Costa completed his studies in 1967 at the Faculty of Arts at the Lisbon University. After submitting a thesis on the novels of Kafka, Franz Kafka: uma escrita invertida (Franz Kafka: writing in the mirror), he earned a PhD in 1969. He was a high school teacher and owned a company (pt:MONDAR editores), where he published a number of sociological texts and avant-garde papers, literature and cinema. After the Carnation Revolution in 1974, he became a filmmaker. He was a partner of Grupo Zero, with other filmmakers like João César Monteiro, Jorge Silva Melo and Alberto Seixas Santos. Later, he became an independent producer with the company Diafilme, where he produced several of his films and some of other directors. He organized film screenings and cycles in Paris (Cinémathèque Française and Musée de l’Homme).


In some way moved by the idea that explains one sentence of Marcel Mauss, a well-known French sociologist and anthropologist, ("There is more poetry in a grain of reality than in the brain of a poet"), certain Portuguese film-makers, specially after the Carnation Revolution, traveled around their country, from one end to another, camera in hand. With state funds or in co-production with the national broadcast TV station, the RTP, some made "engaged films" (cinéma engagé, i.e. political cinema), but never with lack of charm. Others make films in which reality, as an expression of actual events, appears with that poetical charge, as Mauss refers. Films shot with low budgets, but in full liberty. Films portraying reality, a genre to which all those productions fit, would last for a few years and would generate important or even remarkable works, some of which were forgotten.

Costa identifies himself more with that simple idea than with the purpose of changing the world, something intended by most of young Portuguese directors who suffered the traumas of Salazar’s dictatorship for a long time. They now make political films to help their country heal its wounds and breathe. Trying the same other way, Costa cultivates a style in which reality turns into poetical expression, into human portrait, into an interrogation point. Mise en scène, the fictional attraction, will be for him a permanent temptation.

Feature films

  • 1976: AvieirosAvieiros, Tagus fishermen
  • 1976: Mau Tempo, Marés e MudançaChanging Tides
  • 1979: Castro LaboreiroCastro Laboreiro
  • 1979: Pitões, aldeia do BarrosoPitões, a village of Barroso
  • 1980: Verde por fora, vermelho por dentroGreen outside, red inside
  • 1981: O Pão e o VinhoBread and Wine (film)
  • 1981: Longe é a cidadeFar is the City
  • 1981: Ao Fundo desta EstradaFurther ahead on this road
  • 1985: O Nosso FutebolOur Football Game
  • FARAWYS trilogy:
  • 2003: MistsBrumas WATCH FILM trailer
  • 2016: DriftsDerivas
  • 2017: CliffsArribas WATCH FILM trailer
  • Short and middle-length films

  • 1974: No Fundo de Tróia (26') – On the Bottom of Troia
  • 1974: Apanhadores de Algas (28') – Seaweed Catchers
  • 1974: Ágar-Ágar (27') – Agar-agar
  • 1975: Tresmalho (27') – Drifting
  • 1975: O Trol (25') – Long-lining
  • 1975: O Arrasto (29') – Trawling
  • 1975: Oceanografia Biológica (28') – Biological Oceanography
  • 1975: Ti Zaragata e a Bateira (27') – Uncle Zaragata and his Boat
  • 1975: Pesca da Sardinha (29') – Sardine Fishing
  • 1975: Conchinha do Mar (26') – Sea Shell
  • 1975: Às vezes custa (27') – Sometimes it's hard WATCH FILM
  • 1975: A Sacada (26') – The Miracle Fishing
  • 1976: Os Irmãos Severo e os Cem Polvos (29') – The Brothers Severo and the Hundred Octopuses
  • 1976: À Flor do Mar (29') – On the Waterline
  • 1976: A Colher (29') – The Spoon
  • 1976: O Velho e o Novo (28') – Old and New
  • 1976: A Falta e a Fartura (26') – Lack and Wealth
  • 1976: Quem só muda de Camisa (28') – Changing his Shirt
  • 1976: A Máquina do Dinheiro (28') – The Money Machine
  • 1976: Viver do Mar (28') – Living on Sea
  • 1976: Uma Perdiz na Gaiola (26') – A Perdix in Cage
  • 1976: Nas Voltas do Rio (30') – On the River
  • 1976: O Submarino de Vidro (28') – The Glass Submarine
  • 1976: Das Ruínas do Império (28’) – On The Empire Ruins
  • 1976: Cravos de Abril (28') – April Carnations, Œillets d'Avril (fr): the Carnation Revolution in Portugal
  • 1977: Sea born (38') – E do Mar Nasceu
  • 1978: Música do Quotidiano (25') – Everyday Music
  • 1978: Abril no Minho (50') – April in Minho
  • 1979: A Lampreia (6') – The Lamprey
  • 1979: A Coca (13') – Saint George and the Dragon
  • 1979: Histórias de Baçal – Stories of Baçal
  • 1979: Esta aldeia, Rio de Onor – This Village, Rio de Onor
  • 1979: O Pisão (13') – The Fulling Mill
  • 1979: A Feira (7') – The Village Market
  • 1979: O Outro Jogo (6') – The Other Game
  • 1980: Joaquim da Loiça – Joaquim da Loiça
  • 1980: Pastores da Serra da Estrela (8') – Shepheards of Serra da Estrela
  • 1980: Barcos de Peniche (13') – Ships of Peniche
  • 1980: O Parque Nacional de Montesinho (50') – The National Park of Montesinho
  • 1982: Lisbon and the Sea (Lisbon and the International Court for the Law of the Sea) for the UNESCO
  • 2014: GIG – ten minutes sequence shot film essay in honor of Pink Floyd (The Dark Side of the Moon). WATCH FILM at Youtube (search “GIG 10 minutes sequence shot in honor of Pink Floyd”)
  • Other genres

  • 1989–2006: Paroles, interviews with Jean Rouch (long version, three parts version, and TV version) (in French)
  • Writings

    Articles and essays on vision and language (pt, fr, en)


    Ricardo Costa (filmmaker) Wikipedia