North American premiere
Camera Lucida On Demand

King Car (Carro Rei)

Directed by Renata Pinheiro

Virtual Screening


Official selection

International Rotterdam Film Festival 2021
Brussels International Fantastic Film Festival 2021


Renata Pinheiro


Sérgio Oliveira, Renata Pinheiro, Leo Pyrata


Jules Elthing, Matheus Nachtergaele, Luciano Pedro Jr, Clara Pinheiro

Brazil 2021 99 mins OV Portuguese Subtitles : English

Since birth, Uno – son of a taxi man – has had the peculiar ability of talking to cars. When one such vehicle takes his mother’s life, he becomes dedicated to car-lessness, and sustainable agriculture. But dreams don’t last when you’re from a family of motorheads. Tragedy strikes and a new policy outlawing old vehicles from the roads puts his father’s business at risk, bringing Uno back to the fold. Together with his unhinged uncle and a provocative performance artist (determined to take down the mechanistic patriarchy), he sets out to modernize his father’s fleet for a new conscientious age. Enter Carro Rei, the sentient car of the future, a perfect symbol of humanity’s relentless innovation in the 20th century… and an apt emblem for its undoing in the 21st.

On the heels of remarkable genre experiments such as BACURAU and FRIENDLY BEAST, KING CAR confirms Brazilian cinema’s unique position as purveyors of artful genre entertainment. Casting a critical light on Brazil’s ongoing populist nightmare and the limits of progressivism in a machine-driven, late-capitalist framework, it updates on J.G. Ballard and David Cronenberg’s CRASH, while making a hyper-local statement. Taking us deep into an evocative nightmare where the limits between man and machine are increasingly blurred, Renata Pinheiro’s KING CAR takes place in an ominous junkyard universe, photographed in sickly greens, blues and yellows. Unafraid to tease out the multiple ironies and conflicts inherent to our current twilight predicament, this is a film of the moment, wherein our machine fetish becomes a self-fulfilling tragedy. – Ariel Esteban Cayer