Review by Dan Skip Allen
The thing I like about documentaries is they focus on a lot of different topics. It's especially interesting to learn about places and people that I might not have known about before. In the case of My Darling Supermarket, the filmmakers focus on a grocery store chain called Veran Supermarcados, a Brazilian company not too dissimilar to grocery stores in the United States.
The film deals with some of the employees of Veran, including an Asset Control worker (nicknamed "The Eye in the Sky"), two bakery workers named Rodrigo & Kelly who may or may not have feelings for each other, a baker/dishwasher who likes manga & anime and does cosplay in their spare time, a cashier with anxiety issues, and a warehouse worker and manager who has thoughts about the great hereafter. All of these people do regular jobs in a grocery store just like any other store.
Employees walking around doing their jobs is a regular occurrence in the film. One sequence follows a guy who is zoning, bringing all the merchandise to the front of the shelves. This is a familiar trick in American grocery stores as well. It's neat to see stores in different countries do similar things. This store will be very familiar to viewers despite the language barrier that separates them.
The film is a nice look at these regular people who work at a grocery store. It also has some nice camera tricks up its sleeve. The filmmaker uses some creative techniques to put the camera in interesting places like a bread grinder and looking out at the screens viewing the store from the eye in the sky. The score is really nice as well. It has a melancholy feeling to it. It's very mellow and soothing. It is placed best over the quieter moments of the film.
My Darling Supermarket is a nice little film. It offers a look into grocery stores in another country, but the point is in seeing how it's very similar to our own in the United States. The characters were interesting but their stories were not that exceptional. They were just normal people who worked at this store featured in the film. A few different camera tricks and a warily soothing and melancholy score added to the overall feel of the film. This may not be a great or revolutionary film, but for what it is, it works.
My Darling Supermarket streams in virtual cinemas beginning February 24. A list of participating locations can be found here.