Brazilian movies – Films to study Portuguese

Brazilian movies - A list of films to watch and study Portuguese

Brazilian movies to study Portuguese

Welcome to our Portuguese Basic Tips (in English) about Brazilian movies

On today’s podcast we are going to speak about a few Brazilian movies you can watch to improve your Portuguese faster. You may know watching movies is a good way to learn a new language.  This list of films may vary from one country to another, but tried to pick titles that you can watch on netflix – at least all of them are available on netflix Brazil.

Unlike the Brazilian soap operas, the movies that are produced here use a similar language to that one we speak daily.

My tip is that you should try to watch them twice: this will help you to consolidate vocabulary.

At the first time, try to watch the movie with no subtitles and check how much of it you were able to understand.

At the second time, watch the movie with subtitles (in Portuguese or in English – suit yourself) and pay attention to the parts you didn’t understand before.

Let’s take a brief summary of the films, so that you can choose which one you like best. Here I will write a kind of synopsis, but using my thoughts on each one of them, right?

Tropa de Elite – Elite Squad (Brazilian Movies)

This one talks about the day-to-day of a of police captain in Rio de Janeiro. Wagner Moura plays the role of Capitão Nascimento. The movie is about the corruption of the police department and about the violence in the slums of Cidade Maravilhosa. Although Wagner Moura, the lead actor, was born in Bahia, here you will find many typical expressions used in Rio de Janeiro. If you like it, you can also try the second version of the movie: Tropa de Elite 2.


Se eu fosse você – If I were you

In fact, here in Brazil there are produced many movies about violence in general, but this one is different. This one is about love and it was very successful here. The plot is not that original. This is the typical romantic comedy in which couples change the roles, but I think you will find it very funny! Much like the other one, you can watch Se eu fosse você 2, the second version of the movie.

Central do Brasil – Central of Brazil

This movie was nominated for an Oscar in 1998 and it tells the story of a woman who writes letters for those who don’t know how to do it. She gets involved with a boy’s life that is looking for his father and tries to help him in his search.

It is a very, very, very emotional theme with great actors.

Give it a chance. You won’t regret it.


Abril despedaçado – Behind the sun

This movie’s lead actor is Rodrigo Santoro. You might know him because of his acting in Lost Series.

The movie is about an older brother of a family who must avenge his younger brother’s death.

I should warn you that in this case the movie doesn’t represent the Portuguese spoken by the vast majority ofBrazilians. Rodrigo was born in Rio de Janeiro, but he tries to imitate the accent of Brazil’s country here. You may find it a little bit exaggerated.

Ó paí ó

And speaking of exaggerated accent, this one should win all the awards! The movie takes place in Bahia and it is about carnaval (carnival).

Although it has a difficult to understand accent, it is probably the funniest movie on the list. If you can understand – with no subtitles- what they speak there, congratulations! You are able to understand anything about Portuguese.


O Concurso – The contest

This is a comedy film. 4 candidates for judges will apply on a national test. During the movie, they try to cheat in order to achieve better grades in their exam.

One of the actors is from Porta dos Fundos, a famous youtube channel in Brazil.

Paraísos Artificiais – Artificial paradises

This one is for those who like electronic music. The movie tells the story of two girls involved with a guy in a party. Their lives will change a lot after that.

It is a good choice for learning slang about this universe.

Jean Charles (Brazilian Movies)

This movie tells the true story of a Brazilian immigrant who was mistaken for a terrorist in London. I think it is one of the best choices on the list, because of the mix of Portuguese and English you will find here.

Plus: Selton Mello is one of the best Brazilian actors in my opinion and, as always, he did a great job in this film.

That’s enough for now. Of course, we have many more movies to speak about. If you like stand-up comedy, search for Rafinha Bastos or Murilo Gun; if you are interested in a spiritual thing, search for anything about Chico Xavier; if you want know something else on Brazilian violence, keep searching for Carandiru or Assalto ao Banco Central. I tried to give you a list with different subjects, so that you can choose what you prefer.

Become a Premium Member to download the transcripts of our podcasts

Visit our last episode in which I spoke about related terms for “would”, “could” and “should” in Portuguese.

See you next time.


Marcos Sales

You may also like...

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *