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A long night's journey into day: Victor, a street hustler in the Santa Fe and Pueyrredón neighborhoods of Buenos Aires, from the evening of November 1, All Saints Day, to the dawn of November 2, All Souls Day. Victor's odyssey takes him from clients to friends to a gay gym then a hotel room and an all-night café. He plays pick-up soccer with kids whose parents are going through trash or waiting in parks. A vendor gives him a chrysanthemum. It seems he's being followed, and on the night streets, death is close at hand. Can Victor survive until dawn? Written by
Wearing a spotless white shirt and incessantly looking for clients to sell his body or drugs to, Victor strolls through the nights of Buenos Aires, vibrating city it appears to be. "Ronda Nocturna" follows this taxi boy's truly hallucinating trip on All Souls' night. Only a couple of (near imperceptible) slow motions slow down Victor's march.
Backed by Cine Ojo, a production house specialised in documentaries, writer-director Edgardo Cozarinsky tidily portrays Victor and his natural habitat, outcasts of a society that itself is on the edge. Avoiding demagogy or political discourse, Cozarinsky shows the state his native country is in. But not without losing his sense of humour! A hilarious scene in a luxurious building depicts a diplomat, accompanied by a harem of rent boys, who is complaining to a peer about the allowance he is supposed to live on in Switzerland. And of course there is the unforgettable one-night stand with Margaret Thatcher!
But Cozarinsky's major achievement is the subtlety with which he manages to slip a magic atmosphere in this raw-realist character study. Bizarre acts of love, dealing more with Thanatos than with Eros, make Victor doubt. Like vampires, lovers with scars hunger after their beloved. When the November 1st calendar paper is ripped off, the surreal night goes into its final lane. An encounter with an old sweetheart (an impressive Moro Anghileri) confronts Victor with his past his late youth in the country. He realises that his body is not meant for the things he does with it. At dawn, Victor is a changed man.
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