Fifteen years has passed before he could be able to openly face and write about his memories, which he finds all throughout Lisbon, in a continuous swing that brings the reader back and forward between past and present.
In Billie August’s movie denial is explored on two levels: in a strict sense, as we see it in the story of the Portuguese characters, and in a wider sense, as it emerges from Raimund’s past. On the one hand denial is the strategy used by the main characters to cope with the death of Amadeu which had occurred on 25 April, 1974, the day of the Revolução dos Cravos, an important day for the group of friends who were at the time young and engaged in the resistance against the regime of the Estado Novo. Even if many years have passed, we guess twenty at least, people are not willing to remember the past: João only accepts to talk to a foreigner but he has never told anything to his niece; Jorge keeps avoiding Raimund and refuses answering his questions, Estefânia lives far from Lisbon and ,above all, Amadeu’s sister Adriana at the first encounter with Raimund pretends her brother never died. On the other hand Raimund was not experiencing a denial of the death of a loved one, but of the failure of his marriage, which in any case represents a loss.
Denial is indeed the first step in the process of grieving which is necessary not only in case of loss as a result of death but it may also occur in someone who experience a different life-changing event such as a