An allegory about Brazil's history and the struggle for power since the 1930 Revolution until the advent of the TV. A journalist is tortured by police in the wake of political and social chaos, and the information he r...展开eveals leads to the death of a popular rebel leader. The journalist recovers and is sent to interview a plantation owner who is fighting to save his land from being nationalized. Men are helpless to halt the changes that are sweeping the country. The journalist is driven off his father-in-laws land when he voices support of a rebel strongman. His younger brother tries to grab the land for himself and ingratiate himself to the new government. In a pique of revolutionary fervor, the journalist wishes for his brother's death and threatens to have his father arrested. The patriarch commits suicide after burning down his home so it will not fall into the hands of the rebels. The journalist inherits the land and all the problems of the peasants he tried to help.
From 1930 to 1969, "Os Herdeiros" follows the lives of the fictional characters (Jorge Ramos (Sérgio Cardoso), Dr Almeida (Mário Lagos) etc.), all of them visibly inspired in names of the Brazilian politic history, such as Roberto Marinho, Carlos Lacerda and others, showing glances of the Brazilian political events in the last century.
The story begins in 1930, with the "Revolucao de 1930" ("Revolta Tenentista") and the end of the coffee oligarchy and the government of president Washington Luis. Getulio Vargas assumes the Provisional Government of Brazil. There are ellipses, showing relevant facts in the national politic: (a) 1940, with Getulio Vargas still in the presidency. (b) 1945, with the fall of Getúlio Vargas. (c) 1949, with President General Eurico Gaspar Dutra. (d) 1954, with the suicide of Getúlio Vargas. (e) 1960, with the construction of the capital Brasília.