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El bonaerense (2002)

6.9
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Ratings: 6.9/10 from 1,248 users   Metascore: 66/100
Reviews: 10 user | 23 critic | 7 from Metacritic.com

A young locksmith is forced to leave his home and family to join the Buenos Aires police force.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Jorge Román ...
Zapa
Mimí Ardú ...
Mabel
Darío Levy ...
Gallo
Hugo Anganuzzi ...
Polaco
Víctor Hugo Carrizo ...
Molinari
Graciana Chironi ...
Madre Zapa
Roberto Posse ...
Ismael
Luis Viscat ...
Pellegrino
Aníbal Barengo ...
Caneva
Gerardo Maffoni ...
Osorio
Liliana De Maria ...
Marina
Gastón Polo ...
Lanza
Facundo Gomez ...
Salazar
Carlos Federico Simon ...
Hijo de Mabel
Marcela Uzuka ...
Instructor Policial
Edit

Storyline

Zapa is a locksmith in a quiet and little town lost somewhere in the province of Buenos Aires. The work is quite slow, and hours seem to pass slowly. Polaco, the owner of the shop, sends him on a job that consists of opening a safe at an office. The next day, Zapa is imprisoned for being responsible of robbing the place. Ismael, his uncle, a retired policeman, bails him out and sends him to Buenos Aires. Zapa becomes an aspiring officer in the Buenos Aires Police. He gets to his new home city, takes the instructional course, works at a precinct, has a love affair with a teacher and starts to see his life turn into a strange fiction. Written by Edgardo Rossetto

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

locksmith | policeman | robbery | See All (3) »

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

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Details

Language:

Release Date:

19 September 2002 (Argentina)  »

Also Known As:

Rekrut  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

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Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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User Reviews

 
Prince of the City
29 May 2014 | by (NY) – See all my reviews

World cinema is littered with parables about big-city vice and corruption seen through the eyes of an innocent outsider who, whether through circumstances or choice, finds him- or herself enmeshed in a world he or she barely understands, yet feels morally obligated to correct. Though the outline of El bonaerense suggests another entry into this dependable, if well-worn, category—it features a reticent provincial (Jorge Román) who, after being scapegoated for a crime, has no other option but to follow his ex-cop uncle's advice who has him enlisted in the disreputable "Policía Bonaerense" in Greater Buenos Aires—its characterizations and internal narrative logic carry the film far beyond the conventional and expected.

Co-written and directed by Pablo Trapero, once a leading light of the so-called Argentine new wave alongside Lucrecia Martel, Martín Rejtman and Lisandro Alonso, the film is not only both grittier and more absurdly comic than most of Sidney Lumet's policiers that are set in and around New York City, it also boldly lacks a character who serves as a moral compass. But it similarly depicts the metropolis as a writhing, slithering organism, consuming everyone and everything in reach. And, likewise, the more intimately detailed the proceedings become, the more they allude to the inefficiency at the greater sociopolitical levels, the bedrocks of institutional dysfunction (and individual corruption).

Shot verité style with an often gorgeously grainy color palette, the film is marked by a pair of sweaty, explicit, almost violent sex scenes that, similar to such moments in Cronenberg's A History of Violence (2005), help illuminate both the underlying behavioral instincts of the protagonist (whose subjectivity remains opaque) and the dynamics of the relationship he shares with his significant other—in this case an older police instructor, one of many lively secondary characters. Offering no easy out for either its subject or the audience, El bonaerense presents a disarmingly disturbing vision of a society that has lost its soul.


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