The film, “O Tradutor” (The Translator), starring Rodrigo Santoro, 43, debuts tomorrow in Brazilian cinemas and tells the story of a Cuban teacher of literature who goes through a life-changing experience when invited to work as a translator (interpreter) from Russian to Spanish at a Cuban hospital. What he was not expecting was that he would work in the children’s ward, with child victims of the Chernobyl disaster (Ukrainian city destroyed after a nuclear accident in 1986).
Rodrigo says that he started to study Russian but didn’t have enough time to learn the language. “So, I had to study the lines to have a notion of the language. It was then that I realized that I wasn’t understanding anything (laughs). I made a phonetic map. And I studied based on this. I used to wake up during the night saying weird things, thinking that it was Russian”, said Santoro in an interview with Folha de S. Paulo.
The feature film, which has already received many positive reviews, relates a dramatic experience where the translation needs to go beyond words: moments in which feelings and emotions also need to be translated and interpreted.
Based on real events, the Cuban directors Rodrigo and Sebastián Barriuso, newcomers to cinema, were inspired by their father, the literature teacher lived by Santoro in the film.
For those who are fans of a good film, cinema and translation, O Tradutor is an excellent tip!