Twenty-five years after finishing high school, a group of former students decides to meet in Elvas. At the scheduled hour, sometime in Autumn 1998, around thirty ex-classmates converge to a city where, suddenly, all traces of memory become inaccessible, absence looms in the air, delays become dialogue and, finally, as a pretext, where a feast will end up ritualising a string of bonds and infatuations that were thought long lost. As this afternoon of machinations exposes old resentments, grievances, antipathies or even affections, the identity of a recent, yet deeply ingrained Portugal arises from the frail twists of fate that weaved this sudden reunion together. In the classic manner of tragic foreshadowing, two surprises are kept secret from the lunch party: a visit to a wine cellar and a stroll through a marble quarry in Vila Viçosa. Indeed, at the quarry, the unexpected fall of an enormous block of marble moments after the beginning of the visit ends up burying some of the party in rubble. For two whole days, and in a sort of capricious grotto, these old high school classmates from Elvas will remain between life and death, between delirium and the impossible, between fright and radical surprise. However, these characters will most of all face, due to their tragic circumstances, the jagged irrationality and the living confrontation of the ghosts of their past. A fault (falha, or flaw) line that runs its course over this grotto will define the symbolic course of this story in the certainty, however, that this fault is not only geological, but also extends to memory, to the unruliness of behaviour and the terrible surprises of fate. The fault line ends up being the physical manifestation of the of the very real mistake of those who, one day, decided to challenge time, turning it into a celebration that, in and of itself, was meant to erase the million flaws of the past. It is through this game of incisive schisms that this story will come to its (perhaps predestined) end.

  • Duration: 105
  • Production year: 2002
  • Country: France, Portugal