John J. is a seasoned hit man sent on a job to Argentina. When the General he's sent to kill delays his return to the country, John passes the time with Manuela, a beautiful dancer who becomes his teacher and guide into Argentina's sensual world of the tango. Spellbound by the rich and mysterious world Manuela has shown him, his idyll is shattered when the reality of why he's there comes crashing down around him. Written by
This movie is Robert Duvall's tribute to tango, which is why he filmed it in Buenos Aires using many real tango dancers and authentic tango locations. Some of the tango celebrity faces you can spot include: Geraldine Rojas and Javiar Rodriguez (Pirucha - sister of Manuela and her first partner), Pablo Veron (Pirucha's final parter in the closing credits), Jorge Dispari and La Turca, Orlanda Paiva, Maria Nieves, Armando Orzuza, Carlos Copello, Alicia Monti, Los Hermanos Macana (two men performing a dance). The club with the checkerboard floor is Club Sin Rumbo, in the outskirt of the city, but a famous barrio for producing excellent tango dancers. See more »
Robert Duvall directed this film, which seems first of all made in order to allow Robert Duvall the actor to play a pretended complex character of a paid killer with a soul. From this point of view the film is a failure. The character does not succeed to gain the sympathy of the viewer, and the complexity of the character is faked. Too much is badly written or un-explained in this movie. Even if action is not supposed to be in the focus, the reasons and details of the murder conspiracy and the events around are left too much in the fuzzy zone.
What remains is the well described atmosphere of Argentina, and the love of the character with tango dancing, and the beautiful Argentinian who introduces him to the secrets of tango. These are indeed the best moments of the film, but it is still to little to sustain the film, and left me with the feeling that they are strangely disconnected from the rest.
An un-satisfactory film experience. 6/10 on my personal scale.
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