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Avoid the stupid description on the back of the DVD which makes this film sound like a brainless soap opera. Also beware of some other IMDb reviews which contain spo!lers.
THE LESS YOU KNOW ABOUT THE MOVIE, THE MORE REWARDING IT WILL BE FOR YOU.
If it's too late and you've already read the description and/or spo!lers, never fear. A lot of them are misleading anyway. Just try your best to forget it all.
All you need to know about the plot is that it's about a rich girl who has a run of bizarre revelations and decides to head out into the desert to do some soul searching. Pretty much what Buddha did 2500 years ago, but in this case there's a bit more sex & drugs than Buddha experienced, I'm guessing.
The first half of the film contains elements of violence, sex, drugs, and harsh urban reality. The second half showcases nature, harmony, Shinto-like animistic philosophy, and surrealistic scenes. The last 15 minutes are when the two worlds come together.
"Piedras Verdes" is creatively edited, using flashbacks, flashforwards, dream sequences, different film stocks, excellent music to fit the mood, and 1 or 2 moments of great comic relief to balance the heaviness. It may seem random at times, but rest assured everything has meaning. After seeing this film, I immediately watched it again and saw so much more depth & meaning in each scene.
If you go into this film not knowing anything (which is the way it should be done), it will require some brain power to piece together exactly how it all fits. If you like films that require audience intelligence, like "Pi" (1998), "A Serious Man" (2009), or maybe even "The Usual Suspects" (1995), I think you'll dig this one.
Visually and stylistically it reminds me of the films by Italian neo-surrealist Gabrielle Salvatores such as "Denti" (2000), "Io non ho paura" (2003), and "Mediterraneo" (1991). Portions also reminded me of Werner Herzog's films, the way animals are used symbolically and the way nature is presented as an envelopping force making our human lives seem puny. Another excellent director from the same class would be Wim Wenders and his films "Paris, Texas" (1984) and "Don't Come Knocking" (2005). And you might notice some similarities with Hungarian director Emir Kusturica. I can't think of too many Hollywood films I can compare "Piedras Verdes" to... maybe something by Terry Gilliam, like "Tideland" or "Fear & Loathing in Las Vegas" but that's sortofa stretch.
This was the first Ángel Flores Torres film I've seen, and I was really impressed & surprised. If you like films that pack a lot of symbolic, artistic & philosophical surprises, definitely check this one out!
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