Vargas, a 54 year old man, gets out of jail in the prvince of Corrientes, Argentina. Once released, he wants to find his now adult daughter, who lives in a swampy and remote area. To get ... See full summary »
When his long-lost brother resurfaces, Jacobo, desperate to prove his life has added up to something, looks to scrounge up a wife. He turns to Marta, an employee at his sock factory, with ... See full summary »
Juan Pablo Rebella,
In this contemporary film noir, an elegant crew of female creatures emerges insect-like from portals on board a ship anchored in a tropical sea, their faces obscured from view. The beings ... See full summary »
ENT physicians gather at a provincial hotel in Salta. The hotel owner, Helena, is subdued, brittle, avoiding the calls of her ex-husband's pregnant wife. Family dysfunction seems everywhere. Helena's daughter, Amalia, about 14, discusses vocations in a Catholic girls group. Their teen imaginations conflate the erotic, the religious, and the lurid. Amalia notices Dr. Jano, and he notices her. She decides to make him her vocation, she follows him, he rubs against her in a public crowd, he's appalled at his actions. Meanwhile, Helena believes Jano is attracted to her even though he's married. Longing, guilt, scandal, and teen sensuality are set to collide. Written by
Looking at some of the other user comments, I realize that many sought to extol the purported virtues of this film, professing Lucrecia Martel's artistic brilliance and method for capturing personality and conflict as demonstrated in this, her "ouevre," but as far as I'm concerned, these people must be blind, if not also deranged. This movie is abysmal. It's inert, without direction and a true chore to finish. The first hour and a quarter scarcely set the stage, with the duration moving no quicker or more palatably, and I'm more than patient with artistic efforts that appear to want for plot, but this was pointlessly plot less and otherwise utterly bereft of potentially other redeeming features. The bulk of the acting is mediocre to average, Martel's writing without flair or innovation, and the camera work and editing pretty much boring. Why Almodovar was willing to put his name on this work (and I'm convinced that it was his name and no more, based on the wretchedly lobotomizing slowness of the story, bloviating banality and clear absence of captivating content) is beyond me. And I would like to clarify that this dreadful film school fare should not even be included in the same paragraph, let alone be the subject of any direct comparison (unless it is a profoundly disparate one) to any of the following: Amores Perros or any of Inarritu's work, any actually-Almodovar-created work, the Cuaron Bro.s' Y Tu Mama, Salles' Motorcycle Diaries or Central Station, Meirelles' City of God or even the pretty but anticlimactic Carrera's Crimen del Padre Amaro. And I actually think that the scene settings, character list and cast had real possibility and promise: Mia Maestro (as the young Catholic teacher leading and incessantly lecturing the group of girls in choir practice in sanctimonious catechism-worthy restraint and denial of any sensation or sexual awakening, whom Amalia's friend Jose(fina) claims to have seen making out with a clandestine lover) is pretentiously chaste and overtly uptight but so comely and foreseeably coquettish that I would killed to have seen her character more developed or perhaps the explicit aforementioned trysts; María Alché is sufficiently intriguing, complex and coy that far more could have been done with her, apart from the dilapidated swimming pool and sneaking up on the tragically-boring Carlos Belloso/Dr. Jano; and, well, that's about it. Oh, I almost forgot, I will give Martel this: speaking from the somewhat limited experience as the son of a pathologist and a nurse, Martel DOES manage to capture how deliriously boring and maimingly monotonous a medical convention can be (otorhinolaryngologists no less, their motto would rightly be "fun with phlegm"), particularly when held in a craphole motel (think Leaving Las Vegas' witty "The Whole Year Inn"-cum-"The Hole You're In") and further exacerbated by a tediously planned dramatization of how to conduct a patient interview (a device Martel must have found brilliant since she devotes exponentially more time to this than anything else). Please, if you take nothing else away from my admitted logorrhea, synthesize this: this movie is awful, Martel likely a hack worthy of condemnation rather than scatologicaly-founded praise, and above all else, I implore you, DO NOT WASTE YOUR TIME!
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