O ornitólogo, João Pedro Rodrigues, Portugal, Francia, Brasil, 118', OV (Portuguese, English, Mandarin Chinese, Mirandese, latin) with subtitles in English and Spanish
Fernando, a solitary ornithologist, is looking for endangered black storks along a remote river in northern Portugal, when he is swept away by the rapids. Rescued by a couple of Chinese pilgrim girls on their way to Santiago de Compostela, he plunges into a dark, eerie forest, trying to get back on track. But as he encounters unexpected and uncanny obstacles and people who put him to the test, Fernando is driven to extreme, transformative actions. Gradually he becomes a different man: inspired, multifaceted, and finally enlightened.
João Pedro Rodrigues (Lisbon, 1966) began studying Biology with his eyes set on becoming an ornithologist before ditching his studies to focus on cinema. In O Ornitólogo / L’ornithologue, his fifth feature film currently in the official competition at Locarno, having competed with his previous movies in Un Certain Regard at Cannes and Venice, he precisely focuses on the figure of a solitary ornithologist searching for black swans in danger of extinction when he is swept away by the rapids, only to find himself in a mysterious forest where he is forced to deal with extreme situations.