Architect Stoev (Filip Trifonov) wants nothing more than to leave his
home country Bulgaria behind and go for a working assignment to Rio de
Janeiro, even if that in a way means to betray his home and his friends.
But with only days before his departure, he runs over a passer-by, and
since he can't risk any kind of problem right now, he gets rid of the body
in an illegal way. Thing is, the body doesn't remain gotten rid of, it seems to return
to the car, whatever he does. Stoev even tries to get rid of the body the
usual way, leaving it at the hospital or the morgue, but to no avail.
Eventually, he tries to get rid of the body by dumping it into a
river, illegally burying it, or smuggling it into the garbage truck - but
it always returns.
What's worse, Stoev even drags his wife (Vania Tzvetkova) and daughter
(Natalia Dontcheva) into the mess.
Soon, problems arise, because if
you've got a surplus dead body on your hands, people you don't want to
notice are bound to anyways ... but here's the strange part, not everyone
sees the body, children for example don't, and it eventually becomes
evident that the dead body is the manifestation of the guilt Stoev feels
from leaving everything behind. Thing is, after a while, the body doesn't
only pop up when Stoev is around but becomes more of a general nuisance,
as everybody seems to feel some kind of guilt. Plus, eventually, Stoev turns to Christianity, and once his new faith has
taken care of his guilt, he cannot see the body anymore - but those around
him still can.
It's only when Stoev receives his tickets for Rio that he
is able to see the dead body again, and now he is able to deal with it in
a humane manner - and finds out the body might be that of Jesus Christ
Basically, Adio, Rio is the perfect vehicle for
intellectuals from the former Wesern Block who love to pretend to see political
meaning in every single frame of a film like this one, and therefore praise it as
To be quite honest though, there are some satirical
elements in Adio, Rio, I do not deny that, but in all, it's more of
a light-footed and mild-mannered comedy more than anything else, a film
that shies away from its more macabre elements while it sugar-coats its
satirical undercurrents and at times way too
readily embraces mediocre slapstick. As for its political relevance though
- don't believe everything you read, with only minor altrations this film
could have been made in any Western European country just as well.
all, an ok comedy, but nothing even remotely resembling a classic.