The period, work, love affairs, life and death of Wenceslau de Moraes, the great Portuguese writer whose works were steeped in orientalism, and who was born in Lisbon in 1854, died in Tokushima, Southern Japan, in 1929. The Isle of Love is taken from the title of the most famous chapter in The Lusiads, the epic poem by Luiz Vaz de Camões, the great Portuguese poet of the 16th century.
Paulo Rocha has made many great films, but his name is not as well known as he deserves. Among his filmography, The Isle of Love is one of the representative new wave films of Portuguese film history. It is inspired by the life of Wenceslau de Moraes, a writer and a naval officer who became disillusioned with his homeland and moved to Japan, never to return to Portugal. Although Rocha seems to describe the character's biographies in detail in theatrical sets and literary texts, its external form is transformed into a story of love and death on the cinematic basis of mise-en-scène. According to the documentary Around Rocha’s Table, this film can be seen as a love letter sent to Japan by Rocha who had been fascinated by the nation. [Sung MOON]
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