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Six years of prison in exchange for a life of leisure.
A nice surprise. I found this movie on "You Tube" in a full version without interruptions and found it really engaging from beginning to end.
The other reviewer --the only one-- mentions that it was the last film Hugo Fregonese directed before leaving Argentina to work in Hollywood and although we must make a great deal of concessions for the 60 years gone by since it was made, this film holds very well the passing of time.
Of course there are a lot of things to be considered, starting with the script, quite basic for nowadays standards and following with censorship of the time, that didn't allow blood to be seen when somebody was shot, sex of any kind, not even the mention of it, de rigueur moral endings, etc.
The fascinating side of such an old movie is to see the fantastic changes in customs, living conditions, and life in general, since having been shot in real backgrounds, we get to see the real Buenos Aires of the time, its people, the vehicles of that year --1949-- all under a neo realistic Italian style cinema.
The look of this movie is practically that of a documentary, since they haven't done a single shot in studios, all the action has been photographed in actual private and public spaces, streets, countryside, etc. Black and white photography of course reinforces this feeling.
The acting is good, the dialogs brief and to the point, the direction assured and I didn't find any forced scenes, the film flows smoothly from beginning to end.
An outstanding difference it's noticed in the treatment of life in prison, since nowadays we take for granted the violence within those walls for the prisoners in general and especially for the newcomer..., in the prison of this movie the conduct of the prisoners when it comes to sex, is similar to the one we imagine for a closed order convent, where the interns float around soaked up in the smell of sanctity...
It seems the times were bound towards "Don't ask, don't tell" policies, in many aspects of life, all supervised by the catholic church of the time, heavily imbued in the society of that Buenos Aires and Argentina in general.
A touch of political propaganda is offered from the beginning, when they explain on a written paragraph that "this story happened some years ago, when conditions in jails were different from nowadays..."
But as a general entertainment this movie is surprisingly good.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
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