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"A teenage summer in a small town in the desert, a dysfunctional family, a rock band, a can full of glue, two boys, one girl, loads of tongue kisses, dry heat, wind in Patagonia, existential angst... A teenage story in the middle of nowhere." Written by
The film's script consisted of only a 17-page storyline and the majority of acting was improvised around the plot to deliver a certain level of authenticity and youthful awkwardness. See more »
Yesterday I went for a walk to the lake. And I was thinking that the world is huge. And that human nature, the Big Bang when it all exploded, it brought tons of things: the lakes, the mountains, all the animals. And it also brought human beings -
I sound like a school book - but human beings are much more complex. While a tree is just a tree, a person is something more locked off. It's like we're stuck inside the soap opera of life. And we have to live, we don't have a choice. ...
[...] See more »
Larry Clark in Spanish, but sweet and non-judgmental
I attended the North American premiere of "Glue" at the Toronto International Film Festival. In a phrase, it's Larry Clark meets Gus Van Sant. But I say that in only the most complimentary of terms. The camera basically follows a 15-year old as he discovers himself. He wonders about his physical development, compares himself to his buddy, and begins to explore his sexuality. The barren expanse of Patagonia is the backdrop, the music of The Violent Femmes (who donated the songs gratis) the appropriately angst-ridden soundtrack.
What makes it so different from most American films is that it's all just so natural. No judgments are made. We only observe through the lens of cinematographer Natasha Braier, as well as writer/director/producer Alexis Dos Santos, who did much of the camera-work himself. It's basically about mid-adolescence told, via voice-over, from the point of view of Lucas (Nahuel Perez Biscayart). Most amazingly, the entire film is improvised. Dos Santos held a Q&A afterward and said that he wrote virtually no dialog at all. There was a 17-page script basically outlining the action. But the three lead actors improvised from start to finish. As it turns out, all three had attended the same acting classes where they learned improv, so they were well-versed in the art and were already friends. And it shows. The chemistry between the teens evokes those awkward years as effectively as any film I've seen.
I asked Nahuel what his most difficult scene was and what was his favorite. I won't get too specific, but he most enjoyed some of the more physical aspects of the relationships he develops with his friends. He was quite honest and his matter-of-fact attitude was endearing. I met him afterward and he was polite and self-confident. When I walked up and told him what a good job he did, he thanked me with the look of a pro. He is from Argentina but speaks decent English. In spite of his young age, he has done 9 films and is something of a teen idol in South America. In the States he'd likely be one of the most sought-after young actors in the business.
If coming-of-age films have become a bit worn in the hands of Hollywood, "Glue" will serve as inspiration and provocation to American filmmakers. It's Larry Clark in Spanish. But sweet and non-judgmental. It will leave you with a smile on your face.
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