12 out of 14 people found the following review useful:
Si jeunesse savait, si agesse pouvait ... (If Youth only knew, if Age only could)
swimtwobirds2 from Glebe, Sydney, Australia
13 September 2012
The story tells of a respected journalist who on the eve of his 90th
birthday decides to award himself with a final crazy night of love -
with a teenage virgin! His Madame of note, Rosa, who had not heard from
him - whom she calls El Sabio, her Wise Old One - for 20 years, agrees
to provide such a rarity for an additional fee of a pitiable couple of
So the arrangement is made, but when El Sabio is left in the maiden's
bedroom, where naked, with gaudily painted face she is sleeping under a
herbal sedative, he is touched by her appearance and vulnerability. His
heart is moved by the situation, and other than to touch her hair and
to sing a little song to her sleeping form, he does not attempt
anything physical with her. He leaves some money on the pillow and
takes his departure.
He informs Rosa of what passed, who asks if he wants his money back;
no, he is not that stingy, but he asks to have another assignation with
the girl, whom he calls Delgadina. This is arranged by Rosa, but the
outcome is as before - she sleeps through his visit, he sings to her.
And that is the core of the story - he realises that, for the first
time in his long life he is in love. What follows I will not reveal, so
as not to spoil the story for you; but I assure you that it is sweet,
touching and beautifully told.
A feature of the telling of this story is the use of time-shift - we
flicker from present to incidents vital, trivial, funny or sad at
various times in the past, mostly memories of El Sabio's mother and of
his interactions with the whores who serviced him and the fellow
clients whom he recalls for one reason and another. It is a cleverly
made pastiche that builds up into a richly coloured image of this man
and of his long life without love, made almost tragically bitter-sweet
by his realisation of what he has missed at this late hour of his life.
El Sabio expresses this in the line: 'Sex is the consolation for those
that have not yet found love.'
For what it is worth, I heartily recommend this film - and I leave you
to find out what happens in El Sabio's love affair for yourself. You
will thank me for it!
My English subtitles for this are available at allsubs.org - enjoy!
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