Come and Go

Filmed as he was terminally ill, Come and Go is Monteiro's minimal goodbye to a cinema-and a city, Lisbon-he loved. “João Vuvu” (Monteiro) is an elderly libertine who spends his days riding the creaking trams up and down Lisbon's streets, feeding birds the wrong things in leafy-green parks, speaking alternately poetically, philosophically, and illicitly to the poorly paid women who clean his apartment, and discussing art, literature, politics, and more with various strangers and apparitions. Adrift in discourse yet grounded in the sun and shadow of a beautifully filmed Lisbon (rarely has a city looked so radiant), Come and Go documents a life lived to the fullest, and the most willful; as always, João refuses to accept what he should, desires what he should not, and never turns away from his body's frailties and failings. The film's-and Monteiro's-final image is, fittingly, a minutes-long close-up of the director's eye, freed of all context, society, and rule: All the things it has seen, we now have seen.

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