Mysteries Of Lisbon review

A spellbinding period drama

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Kicking off with an illegitimate teen (João Luis Arrais) learning about his parents’ fate from a kindly priest (Adriano Luz), this opulent historical epic is a maze of stories-within-stories, spanning several European countries in the late-18th and 19th centuries.

Expect countless stolen identities, romantic betrayals and aristocratic female beauties, all ravishingly shot on DV. It’s certainly no easy task keeping track of the characters amid multiple flashbacks and shifting points of view, but this is spellbinding cinema, handled with flair by late Chilean director Raúl Ruiz.

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