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Estrela d’Africa, a creole quarter on the outskirts of Lisbon. A newborn baby narrowly escapes death on several occasions. Tina, his young mother, takes him in her arms and turns on the gas. Rescued by his father, he ends up on the streets living at the mercy of charity. He is nearly sold twice for next to nothing out of despair and out of love. But Tina can’t forget, and her sisters in the neighbourhood are bent on avenging her.
“Battle” is a good word for this film. A fierce but not fatal battle; also a battle for territory. The film is centred around the idea of “You can’t come into my house and I can’t come into yours, stay out of my picture”. These people are very exclusive in their relationships, like “I’m going to be with this baby for ever.” When we film a picture, it belongs to someone. When I was filming a boy or a girl, I felt they were totally demanding. It was their picture, their life. I don’t mess with that. You act your guts out and that’s also a battle. (Pedro Costa - excerpt from press kit)