Georges and Anne are in their eighties. They are cultivated, retired music teachers. Their daughter, who is also a musician, lives abroad with her family. One day, Anne has an attack. The couple's bond of love is severely tested.
A brilliant plastic surgeon, haunted by past tragedies, creates a type of synthetic skin that withstands any kind of damage. His guinea pig: a mysterious and volatile woman who holds the key to his obsession.
In Montevideo, Jara works the graveyard shift monitoring security cameras at a supermarket. He's about 30, solitary, quiet, and big. He watches TV, likes heavy metal, and sometimes works as a bouncer at a disco. One night he notices one of the cleaning crew, Julia; he watches her via the cameras as she works, then follows some days as she goes to an Internet café, the beach, shopping, or the movies. He stays out of her sight and never talks to her. Thinking she may be hiding somewhere in the store with a male co-worker, Jarita breaks some rules and gets suspended. Then, while watching her one evening, she meets a man. What will Jara do? Written by
Coming from Uruguay Gigante is a masterpiece of low-scale artistic cinema. How this slight story about a metal-loving night security guard stalking the girl of his dreams turned out to be my favorite romantic movie of 2009 lies within its refreshing approach artfully implemented with a dead-pan precision and confidence. Gigante's director Adrien Binez uses the voyeuristic tone of the movie not to oppress viewers, but to enchant them. The movie happens to be sweet when we watch Jara, a large, quiet soul following Julia, an accident-prone cleaner wherever she goes and whatever she does. It abounds with numerous wonderfully observed scenes that abandon the dialogue almost entirely. My favorite scene involves visiting the cinema where Jara has difficulty deciding which movie has been chosen by his love-interest, a love story or a horror movie about a mutant. Guess which one it was. As regards acting, Horacio Camandule provides a sharp and totally likable performance, while Leonor Svarcas is convincing even though her part is limited. Overall, Gigante may be too slow-paced for some, but for me it happens to be an endlessly engrossing miracle of a movie. 9/10 (A-)
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