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Joana de Verona
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Daniel and Ana, brother and sister, best friends. Both are at pivotal, defining moments in their contented lives. Ana is about to be married, Daniel is a gregarious teenager discovering his personal and sexual identity. Yet their harmony is instantly shattered when they are kidnapped and something shocking happens which forces them to confront their desires and fears. Suddenly their old lives are a distant memory. Now, nothing they have known will ever be the same again. Written by
The Film Catalogue
Pretty jaw dropping first 20 minutes or so leading to somewhat tedious aftermath
Movie has an amazing first act---sort of drawing you in with its low key matter of factness to a jaw dropping end of the first act---the big thing that happens to the 2 characters happens almost out of nowhere (the only warning you get that the film is even gonna focus on the 2 siblings is at one point the younger brother's friend says to him yo your sister is hot to which he responds the way a normal kid would--something like "nah she's ugly but at least she doesn't look like a piece of s--t like you.") Hell even the abduction when it comes--happens unexpectedly while the two of them are in the car and she's yelling at him to get a haircut for her wedding. That kidnapping of course and the thing that happens there is quite creepy, uncomfortable, spellbinding, and way too real life which makes it all the scarier (no glossy movie star posturing here.) The rest of the movie is dedicated to the emotional damage this event has on the pair of siblings. While seeing the aftermath of such trauma upend both people's lives is interesting to a point---the movie itself starts to feel more than a little repetitive--and even tho the low key tone of the film is very much an asset--the movie starts to feel a little bit dull as you sit there waiting for something else to happen to either one of the two characters. (which is completely ironic given that something major already happened---something that happened when we weren't expecting it and something that should by all means be more than enough story wise.) Just when it seems like the movie is going to break out of its cycle of scene after scene of the 2 characters moping around their house looking vacant and blank---the film more or less ends. (the sister tries to heal herself by getting therapy and trying to confront what happened to her head on--essentially trying to get her life back together---while the brother just goes deeper and deeper into shell shocked madness....which results in several sequences that make up the pretty startling ending of the film.) The last 2 or 3 scenes are interesting enough in that your sense of suspense picks back up enormously. (i had no idea watching the film that those scenes would end up being the end scenes though which make you realize that the ending is just as low key and out of the blue as the abduction at the beginning of the film was.) I won't say what happens--but its not so much that something happens so much as the sustained tone of menace and creepiness that the director successfully punches up in those last few scenes.
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