Nise: The Heart of Madness

106 minutes 2015

Psychotherapist Nise da Silveiro, the subject of this Brazilian biopic (2015), swam against the tide of professional opinion in her native land, denouncing electroshock and lobotomy in favor of occupational therapy and Jungian analysis. "Listen, observe—shut up," she tells a male nurse soon after joining the staff of a mental hospital where the other doctors are all men, and seriously disinclined to do anything a woman tells them. No less then seven screenwriters contributed to the script, which has its powerful moments but so deifies Silveira that the movie turns into a black-and-white struggle between a caring, enlightened woman and a cadre of hard-hearted, benighted men. Roberto Berliner directed; with Glória Pires in the title role. In Portuguese with subtitles.

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