Directed by Rodrigo França, “A Cut Above” propagates a message to chase our dreams and not get swayed by what other people may want us to do. It also sends the point of accepting everybody’s differences because everybody has their own individuality and lives harmoniously. The film is a big celebration of Brazilian culture and focuses on its many aspects. The film was released on Netflix on July 28, 2022.
‘A Cut Above’ Plotline: What Is The Film About?
The film starts with the introduction of the main protagonist, Richardsson, walking the audience through his hometown as he narrates his own experiences. His narrative ends only after reaching his mother’s salon on the verge of bankruptcy. His mother insists on him focusing more on his studies and escaping the town and the misgivings that his mother had. She doesn’t want Richardsson to end up struggling to make ends meet like her and urges him to get a government job like his father had. However, Richardsson simply wants to help his mother and establish their salon to honor the legacy of the salon. He eventually reaches his goal after finally getting through to his mother’s emotions and making her see his way. She finally comes around to accepting his help and reinstating the salon back to its glory.
The Plot That Breaks The Fourth Wall
The protagonist uses the plot to directly converse with the audience, breaking the fourth wall at various points in the film, mostly to ask for confirmation from the audience about his opinions. Richardsson employs this technique to keep the audience interested in his conversations and lives. Although, when he directly talks to the audience, his discussions are primarily not heard by the other characters. Breaking the fourth wall has been a trend for a long time now. Although it makes most films and series intriguing, the use of this technique in this film is almost unnecessary. Although the character wants to include the audience in the conversations, he sometimes misses the mark and prolongs the scene.
Celebrating Culture And Ourselves
The film is mainly about “realising our dreams.” Richardsson tries his best to make his mother see the reason behind his dream to be a hairstylist. He also plans on doing further studies which will help in upholstering the salon and reinstating its legacy. He stands up for himself after a hilarious gimmick with a chicken showing him the way, and he makes his mother understand after achieving the goal of successfully being known as a hairstylist.
He successfully revamps a local goon’s hairstyle, which inspires the cops and his friends to get a hairstyle as well. He does the first few haircuts for free to spread the word. Then he realizes he could use this situation to turn the fate of his salon around, so he charges double the price after his skills are in demand. He simply incorporates some economics to turn the situation around and save his salon from bankruptcy. He had already established his expertise and was famous enough to ask for a double charge, knowing very well that his customers would happily pay. His mother, on witnessing the situation, couldn’t deny him any longer and let him live his dreams and decide his future for himself.
Although thinly written, the plot also boasts about celebrating one’s culture and staying true to one’s roots. It tells us to accept the differences and live harmoniously. The community was building itself up bit by bit, and the new generation was advised to love their culture and their identity. The film also incorporates different sexual identities of people. Richardsson is introduced to polyandry and polygamy. He starts to discover his polysexual preferences through his crush, Rachel, and her boyfriend. Although this segment was needless, the film stands by its purpose of accepting each other’s differences. In the film, Richardsson’s sister is shown dating a Caucasian boy. His mother does eventually accept them. However, the boy was there to write his thesis on their culture. The film concludes by celebrating differences and highlighting one’s culture.
‘A Cut Above’ Ending Explained: Hybrid Cultures And Globalization
The world is now one big global village where every individual is being constantly exposed to different cultures. This is creating a hybrid culture that is being adopted by people. The dominant one of the two cultures, influences people to the point where they adopt certain traits of that culture. The two cultures overlap and intersect to create a new identity or rather have an overwhelming influence over the prevailing culture. This is possible due to economic transactions between two nations or due to the media content consumed by the nations that impact the countries. For example, sitcoms and music produced by America had a direct influence on more than one generation in India. Nowadays, the Korean Pop wave and the Japanese Anime wave have been influencing a larger section of the world, as a result of which many people are absorbing and adopting certain approaches. Therefore, it so happens that the original culture is either pushed away sometimes, or people do not follow it as much.
The film culd have had a better storyline, but the message was glaringly obvious that people should stop discriminating against each other and should accept the differences instead of using them as insults. The film ends on a happy note when Richardsson proves his skills as a hairdresser to his mother and gets her approval. He earns enough money to pay the rent and also keeps his mother’s word, and goes to college. He gets together with Rachel and her boyfriend because they have an open relationship, and they accept Richardson and become a triad. The film could have focused better on different parts of the plot instead of jumping from one twist to the next. The film is a bit silly and can be enjoyed as a one-time watch after a long day.
“A Cut Above” is a 2022 Comedy Drama film directed by Rodrigo França.