Previous Work
Doha Film Institute Qumra, Bogota Audiovisual Market (BAM)

Not available for screening anymore


Directed by João Salaviza

  • Portugal 2009; 15 min
  • Original version: Portuguese
  • Genre: Drama, Short
    • Palme d'Or (Short Film) - Cannes IFF
    • Best Portuguese Short Film - IndieLisboa

  • From the director of MOUNTAIN presented at Doha Film Institute Qumra
    From the director of DNOTES MUSICAL FAIRIES presented at Bogota Audiovisual Market (BAM)


Mauro is under house arrest. Tattooing helps him while away the time. Three local kids taunt him through his window. Outside, the midday sun beats down.

Director's Statement

What interests me more than capturing the transformations a place might undergo, is the tension that builds in the moments where nothing changes. The lead in “Arena” is restricted by limitations of both space and time. By filming Mauro in home confinement I was faced with the situation of a man with nowhere to go. I followed through with that idea from the script to the editing. With the rule that no shot would prefigure the protagonist’s trajectory, nor suggest to him paths he simply could not see. That is right for someone who lives in a house with bars on the windows, and who secretly hopes that things will change by themselves.



    François d'Artemare