Portugal – Isabel Pestana, Cinema Ideal (Lisbon)

Cinema for me is…

Isabel in 25 frames

1. Describe yourself in ten words.
Quiet, not that tall, would rather listen than being the centre of attention.

2. What are your 3 best qualities and your 3 worst habits?
3 best qualities: Polite, don’t make mistakes when I speak and write (in my own language), singing in the shower.
3 worst habits: they are still great as I don’t see anything wrong with them but I would have to say: going to bed almost at dawn, never reading books chronologically, staring at people.

3. What is your dream job?

4. What do you like most about your country?
The hills.

5. What is your favorite dish in your country?
My grandmother’s codfish recipe.

6. What is the word or the expression in your native language that you like the most and what does it mean?
“Feita num 8”. It means you’re so tired, devastated that you look like the number eight.

7. What European capital have you visited lately?

8. Other than your own, which European country would you love to live in?

9. What does Europe means to you?
It has meant more than it does at the moment but I would say a union with some kind of an interior conflict: Europe doesn’t know what it wants — it varies between a technocratic model, becoming modernized and being part of the global market… It also means a bunch of countries some of them with funny names.

10. What are the European values that you share?

11. What film made you fall in love with cinema?

12. What is your favorite cinema theatre and what do you like about it?
Nimas, in Lisbon. It’s dark and almost cozy, there’s a particular smell of dry things that always intrigues me.

13. Where do you like to watch movies and on which platform (DVD, online, cinema, mobile phone, etc.)?
Cinema if I can; DVD if at home.

14. Who is your movie hero?
Agent Dale Cooper (Twin Peaks)

15. If you were a movie director which one would you like to be?
Elia Kazan.

16. Briefly describe your favorite scene.
A man approaches a swimming pool with grapes. We come closer and see a woman emerging and reaching for the grapes the man is holding, almost as if he was fishing. She looks at him in defiance and has one, and then other. When he realizes she’s doing what he wants her to do, he gets closer to find her kiss and she goes underwater again leaving him in abeyance. The scene is from The Arrangement by Elia Kazan (1969).

17. What are the 5 best European films you have seen in the last year?
Victoria, Son of Saul, The Lobster, Mustang and Lemale et ha’halal.

18. Which is the film character that you most identify with?
Clay, Less Than Zero.

19. Your favorite soundtrack or song?
It is not my favorite but I have been listening to it in repeat ever since I watched the film. The Neon Demon soundtrack by Cliff Martinez.

20. If you had to live in a movie, which one would you like it to be?
Blow Up.

21. Your life becomes a bio-pic. Who plays the role of you?

22. Which talent would you most like to have?

23. What is your most treasured possession?
Original works of art, especially oil paintings by Portuguese artists.

24. What do you consider your greatest achievement?
Writing a chapter for a book that will be published in October.

25. What is your motto?
Be patient.

Isabel is the Ambassador of Cinema Ideal. Find out more about the cinema here.