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I was curious about this film, which I watched in DVD format. The film is based on a book by Javier Garcia Sanchez, "Los Otros", which by the way, it's the title of a better known film, "The Others", by Alejandro Amenabar. What I still don't know is whether Amenabar was inspired on this novel, or as the IMDb page indicates, he wrote his own screen play.
Directed by Norberto Lopez Amado, this film came out after the more commercially successful Amenabar's movie. It's strange to have two movies about more or less the same theme filmed by two totally different directors, giving also two different accounts. If you haven't seen the movie, stop reading right here.
"Nos Miran" is a horror story. It starts in a flashback when we see a group of children playing in a railroad yard. Young Juan loses a dare and must lie flat on his back while an incoming train goes over him. At the same time, his young sister disappears in mysterious circumstances. The story goes forward as we watch a grown up Juan, now married to Julia, with two children of his own, a boy, and a girl. Juan works for the police department where he is given the task of solving the mystery surrounding the disappearance of a wealthy man.
In pursuit of this goal, Juan discovers a link to the case when he is referred to go to an insane asylum to try to talk to the police detective that was involved with the case, originally, and now is a lunatic. The only thing he gets out of this person is: "They're watching us".
This is a Gothic tale where reality and the perception of life in other dimensions blend to give a spooky feeling that yes, we are in reality being watched. But is the director referring to an abstract idea, or is he giving his own input in why people in his own country disappeared because of political turmoil? Knowing that Spanish directors, in general, love to have their own input about how they feel about their country, one wonders if the "disappeared ones" are the ones that either had to go away for fear of their lives, or are they the ghost of the "disappeared" in the civil conflict?
Although the film has a vague ending, it creates an atmosphere of mystery and menace lurking behind everything in Juan's house. We don't ever know what really happened with Juan. All we know is that he has been wounded in a leg, but that is not the reason for his demise.
Carmelo Gomez does his best work, in one's humble opinion, in this movie. His performance is multi layered. He expresses his confusion and his fear in a way that he hasn't done before. Either he responded to the material, or to the director, or he liked what he is doing here. Iciar Bollain, has nothing to do in the movie. The veteran Margarita Lozano is also totally wasted, as she stays away from the mystery that is at the center of the action in her own house. The children, Manuel Lozano and Carolina Petterson, are good in their portrayal of Alex and Laura.
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