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Imagining Argentina (2003)

6.2
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Ratings: 6.2/10 from 2,403 users   Metascore: 27/100
Reviews: 40 user | 19 critic | 4 from Metacritic.com

Antonio Banderas and Emma Thompson star in this gripping political thriller about a man with the power to see the fate of missing people - with the exception of his own beloved wife.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Eurydice
...
Orfeo / Enrico
Hector Bordoni ...
Pedro Augustín (as Héctor Bordoni)
...
Carlos Rueda
...
Cecilia Rueda
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Esme Palomares (as Marí'a Canals)
...
Silvio Ayala
...
Teresa Rueda
Anthony Diaz-Perez ...
Policeman 1 (as Anthony Díaz Pérez)
...
Policeman 2
Carlos Kaniowsky ...
Rubén Mendoza (as Carlos Kaniowski)
Stella Maris ...
Concepta Madrid
Concha Hidalgo ...
Octavio Marquez's Grandmother
Ana Gracia ...
Hannah Masson
Horacio Obón ...
Victor Madrid
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Storyline

Antonio Banderas and Emma Thompson star in this gripping political thriller about a man with the power to see the fate of missing people - with the exception of his own beloved wife.

Add Full Plot | Plot Synopsis

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An extraordinary story of love, compassion and danger.


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violence/torture and brief language | See all certifications »
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Details

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Release Date:

16 April 2004 (Spain)  »

Also Known As:

Imagining Argentina  »

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Runtime:

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Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

When it became clear that two additional scenes would help the script, a) the quarrel about whether Cecilia should publish her article and b) the flashback scene why the Cecilia and Carlos got married, there was a little competition going on between 'Christopher Hampton' and 'Emma Thompson', who both wrote their versions of those scenes. Emma Thompson's version of the flashback scene finally was agreed on. See more »

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User Reviews

Argy Bargy
7 September 2004 | by (London, England) – See all my reviews

Imagining… arrived with a fair degree of controversy, having been booed, heckled and subject to walkouts at 2003's Venice Film Festival. By saddling an infamous chapter in Argentina's history with a supernatural slant – Sixth Sense meets Missing, perhaps – many critics thought this was altogether a bridge too far. But was the reaction justified? It rather depends on whether you prefer your politics served up in an allegorical sauce or red and dripping on the bone. An adaptation of Lawrence Thornton's award-winning novel, the story begins in 1970s Buenos Aires, with dissident journalist Cecilia Rueda (a waveringly-accented Thompson) kidnapped by the fascist junta to join the ranks of the 30,000 'Disappeared'. As her bereft theatre-owner husband Carlos (Banderas) searches in vain, he develops psychic powers, enabling him to witness what happened to his wife and her fellow detainees. Laying his hands on their relatives he glimpses horrifying images of torture, rape and death at the military's hands, galvanising a traumatised public into motioning the government. In Thornton's magic-realist hands, Carlos's clairvoyance was a metaphor for the struggle against state repression, as he 'imagines' scenarios running counter to the official line: 'if you live in a nightmare, you have to re-imagine it.' While playwright-turned-director Christopher Hampton (who also wrote the screenplay for The Quiet American) cannot hope to replicate the novel's tender touch – the voyage from page to screen being a tricky one at best – the intentions are heartfelt, and the film does make salient points about the importance of empathy and memory as powerful and long-reaching political instruments in themselves.


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