According to holidaysort, the cultural and folkloric panorama of Portugal is still affected to some extent by the influences determined by the peoples who have linked their destiny to this land: Romans, Visigoths and Moors; but it was above all the presence of the ocean and a horizon to be explored that shaped Portuguese culture over the centuries. The monument erected in Lisbon to celebrate the exploits of the great navigators testifies to the pride of a nostalgic people, bewitched by the splendor of a colonial empire that reached, in the moment of maximum splendor, to extend over an area 20 times greater than that of the motherland. It is no coincidence that the writer Luís Vaz de Camões stands out among the main exponents of “Portugueseness”, who sang the deeds of that colonial empire. But even in the modern era, literature has established itself, together with popular dance and music, as the main expression of the Lusitanian spirit, embodied by the saudade, a feeling of nostalgia and melancholy that represents a recurring element in these cultural spheres. In the field of contemporary art there is no evidence of excellence, while among the most famous exponents of the national literary panorama stands the writer José Saramago, winner of the Nobel Prize for literature in 1998.
The “silent” season (about sixty films from 1911 to 1932, almost half of which was due to French directors) ended with the appearance of two national filmmakers: Leitâo de Barros and Manuel de Oliveira, whose first film, the documentary Douro, faina fluvial (1930), was made sound in 1934. Until 1960 less than a hundred sound films were produced, of mediocre level with the exception of Oliveira (Aniki-Bobó, 1941), for the audience of 360 rooms collected in the cities; while there was a persistent flourishing of magazines and essays on cinema and, starting from the 1950s, of the film club movement. Only in the following decade did the first choral attempts to get out of guardianship with E. de Sousa (Dom Roberto, 1962), A. de Macedo (Domingo a tarde, 1963), P. Rocha (Os verdes anos, 1963; Mudar de vida, 1966), F. Lopes (Belarmino, 1964), A. da Cunha Telles (O cerco, 1969), A. Campos (Vilarinho das Furnas, 1969-71), L. Galvâo and B. Jaculewicz, authors of the medium-length film Bestiaire (1970). 1970 is also the year of the foundation of the Portuguese Cinema Center, around which all the filmmakers, young and old, gathered in a cooperative for a national relaunch, once again headed by Oliveira (O passado eo presente, 1971), which includes films by the aforementioned Macedo (Nojo aos câes, 1970; A promessa, 1973) and Lopes (Uma abelha na chuva, 1972), but also by J. Fonseca and Costa (O recado, 1972), A. Lauro and R. Ceitil (Grande, grande era a cidade, 1971), A Tropa (Pedro Só, 1972), AP Vasconcelos (Perdido por cem .., 1973), JC Monteiro with the medium- length film Sapatos do deceased. After the political turning point of April 25, 1974, the metaphorical cinema was transformed into direct and from the state of resistance it passed to that of intervention. Retrospective accounts were made with the Salazar regime and its legacy of material and cultural underdevelopment, reaching in 1976 the most sincere tension with As ruinas no interior (1977) by José da Sà Caetano and with the extraordinary Trás-os-Montes (1976) by António Reis and Margarida Martins Cordeiro. On the frustrated political hopes there were reflections such as Antes do Adeus(1977) by Ceitil and A Santa Aliança (1978) by E. Geada. In the meantime, Oliveira continued his lofty parable with Amor de Perdição (1978) and Francisca (1980). Although marginal, Portuguese cinematography continued to maintain it throughout the 1980s, thanks to the works of J. Botelho (Conversa Acabada, 1981; Tempos difíceis, 1988), JC Monteiro (Silvestre, 1981; Recordações da Casa Amarela, 1989) and again by Oliveira who shot the splendid A Divina Comoedia(1991)and Viagem ao principe do mondo in 1997 and who confirms himself as the most important Portuguese director, with his elegant and allusive style, first with Inquietude (1998), then with La Lettre (1999) and, respectively in 2001 and 2004, with Palavra and Utopia and Un Film Falado. Not even the provocative and surreal vein of João César Monteiro dries up, as he continues the caustic epic of his character Deus with As bodas de Deus (1999). Among the new authors are Alberto Sexas Santos with the apocalyptic Mal (1999), Paulo Rocha, who wrote the elegant bourgeois melodrama O Rio do Ouro (1998) and Teresa Villaverde who shot in 1998 Os Mutantes and in 2000 Agua and Sal. Finally, of interest is Capitães de Abril(2000), a film that marks the debut behind the camera of actress Maria De Medeiros and which deals with a key episode in Portuguese history, the Carnation Revolution of 1974.