• Maysa Monção

"I think I am not very good at indefinite times"

The title of my review can be related to current times, as so many people are kept confined at their houses without knowing when Covid 19 will be defeated. In fact, though, it is one of Sergio Vieira de Mello's lines on his biopic, Sergio, launched last week on Netflix.

Wagner Moura plays the United Nations diplomat Sergio Vieira de Mello

Based on true facts, Sergio depicts the vary last moments when the Brazilian diplomat was hit by a bomb in Baghdad intertwined with flashbacks of his services to the United Nations.

The movie focuses on his last missions. Sergio was a peacemaker in East Timor, guiding the former Portuguese colony occupied by Indonesia to independence, and he cleared land mines Cambodia in the 90s. His personal life with his children and a recent girlfriend Carolina Larriera, who also worked for UN, smooths his harsh life.

It is said that some of the facts illustrated in Greg Barker's feature are not true. For instance, Gil Loescher and Vieira de Mello were not close friends and colleagues as the film suggests. By the end of the movie, a subtitle explains that the character was a composite of the real Loescher and several members of Mello's team. To the storyline, though, this choice works well.

Once again, Moura proves that his career pathway goes from strength to strength. Neatly, his choices as an actor are done in order to avoid stereotypes, which let's talk frankly is rare in Hollywood, particularly if you are Latin American. After conquering relative exposure with characters that are involved with criminal activities -- Pablo Escobar in Narcos and Lt. Nascimento in Elite Squad --, Sergio is a role model that uplifts Brazilian people. He was a very competent professional, a multilingual and a humanitarian. Previously, as a director Moura launched at Berlinale 2019 Marighella, a rebel that fought against torture and censorship in Brazil in the 60s. Due to the current regime in Brazil, Marighella was controversially denied release date in national territory.

Sergio's relevance today is clear. His never-ending idealism and fight for human rights are still much needed and must be praised. Despite working for an organisation with limited powers that often faces problems keeping the peace, a world without the UN is simply a barbaric place.

You can watch Sergio on Netflix.

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