A retired legal counselor writes a novel hoping to find closure for one of his past unresolved homicide cases and for his unreciprocated love with his superior - both of which still haunt him decades later.
Juan José Campanella
Oliveiro is a young poet living in Buenos Aires where sometimes he has to sell his ideas to an advertising agency to make a living or exchange his poems for a steak. In Montevideo, he meets... See full summary »
An early blockbuster of argentine mute cinema that certainly deserves the popular devotion that has earned for many time after its release. (But ironically, there was no surviving copies of it for years in Argentine until a project carried out in 2002 by a foundation, reconstructing almost full length of the original film).
Taking place in the rural zone of Argentine (`la pampa'), the story has explicit echoes of the national poem `Martin Fierro'. The fiction depicts a classic triangle between a rich owner of a farm, the poor good `gaucho' (wrangler) and his beloved `china'. Shortly after they fall in love, the girl is abducted by the mean landlord and taken to the city, where her darling goes to the rescue.
There are no political nor philosophical issues at stake, but the movie has an epic and romantic sense of contrast between `evil' city / `pure' country that give a strong symbolic meaning to the story. The pace is quite right, boosted by some sparks of humor and a sound set of secondary characters in spite of its cliché mood.
The movie pass the hurdle of the limitations of its time and not only allows the matching with mute well-known classics like `Birth of a nation' but also resists a contemporary looking without much suspension of disbelief.
Beware: the remake of the film , a `talking' movie, is meant to be quite bad.
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