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The Pope's Toilet (2007)
"El baño del Papa" (original title)

 -  Drama  -  8 April 2009 (USA)
7.3
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Ratings: 7.3/10 from 2,005 users  
Reviews: 13 user | 42 critic

A small South American village is in a flurry over the Pope's 1988 visit.

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Cast

Credited cast:
...
Beto
Virginia Méndez ...
Carmen
Mario Silva ...
Valvulina
Virginia Ruiz ...
Silvia
Nelson Lence ...
Meleyo
Henry De Leon ...
Nacente
Jose Arce ...
Tica
Rosario Dos Santos ...
Teresa
Hugo Blandamuro ...
Tartamudo
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Andrea Alvarez ...
Esposa
Wilson Alvez ...
Tomasito
Carlos Andrade
Brandon Antuna ...
Nino
Baltasar Burgos ...
Capitan Alvarez
Yonatan Da Silva ...
Liccal
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Storyline

In Melo, a poor Uruguayan country village near the Brazilian border, several men earn their living from contraband, mostly transported on bicycles. One of them, Beto, is getting too old for heavy freights but hopes to earn a motorbike. The idea is to build and charge money for the use of a proper lavatory at the occasion of the first-ever papal visit to Uruguay, as His Holiness is expected to pass trough Melo where he may be cheered by hordes of Catholic Brazilians. Written by KGF Vissers

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Drama

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8 April 2009 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Pope's Toilet  »

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1.85 : 1
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Uruguay's Official Submission to the Best Foreign Language Film Category of the 80th Annual Academy Awards (2008). See more »

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User Reviews

 
loose amateurish contrived--local faces not enough
2 January 2012 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Follows poor people in small Uruguayan town trying to cash in on the Pope's visit. One decides to build a bathroom (kind of dry irony of some sort). The entire livelihood of the main characters is dependent on smuggling things from Brazil on bicycles.

I have recently watched now 3 films all from the same area (Argentina and Uruguay) all with loads of local realism. All of them made recently.

By far the best was *Live In Maid*... It features two professional actresses but it is flawlessly authentic...a bump down was *Intimate Stories* it is authentic but too sentimental...still it is technically sound and holds together nicely.

This film by contrast is loose amateurish and contrived...the local faces are good that is it.

I found the main actors not convincing (they looked middle class not poor) and the relentless shots of the staged poverty and local color (cows being herded in unconvincing ways etc..) depressing rather than interesting (as they would be if it is done right).

It was as though anyone well dressed clean and middle class was run off the streets although you accidentally saw a few of them in the Brazilian town. I got the point it is a poor community but I felt it staged and exaggerated---in short contrived.

Of the actors the husband does the best job and is a likable character...the daughter totally unlikeable (was she adopted? looks zero like the parents) with a constant sour expression--the wife too old for the role. I got tired of seeing her rear end in old baggy Levi's.

It tells me just shooting edited slums (to show most broken down features) and faces doesn't cut it. Especially with obvious middle class actors carrying the story. Just make an authentic documentary!

Not an art grade film watch the 2 others I mention above instead.


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