9 February 2013 4:06 PM, PST | The Guardian - Film News | See recent The Guardian - Film News news »

Following Tony Manero and Post Mortem, No completes a cool, ironic trilogy of films by Pablo Larraín about life in General Augusto Pinochet's Chile. The year is 1988 and after 15 years of Pinochet's dictatorship, the United States, which helped put him in power, has insisted he have a referendum on his presidency. The regime thinks a "Yes" response in a climate of increasing prosperity should be a shoo-in, while the left wing is all for boycotting what it regards as a window-dressing sham that would lead to more of the same.

But this witty, double-edged movie is no ordinary exercise in political cinema. It focuses on two men from the same prosperous Santiago advertising agency. The middle-aged head, Lucho Guzmán (Alfredo Castro), is a decent, complacent man who happens to be a senior figure on Pinochet's advisory council. His smartest employee, René Saavedra (Gael García Bernal), is a liberal whizz kid, »

- Philip French

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