5.8/10
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Ask the Dust (2006)

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Mexican beauty Camilla hopes to rise above her station by marrying a wealthy American. That is complicated by meeting Arturo Bandini, a first-generation Italian hoping to land a writing career and a blue-eyed blonde on his arm.

Director:

Robert Towne

Writers:

Robert Towne (screenplay), John Fante (novel)
1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Colin Farrell ... Arturo Bandini
Salma Hayek ... Camilla
Donald Sutherland ... Hellfrick
Eileen Atkins ... Mrs. Hargraves
Idina Menzel ... Vera Rivkin
Justin Kirk ... Sammy
Jeremy Crutchley ... Solomon
Ronald France Ronald France ... Columbia Sweeper
Dion Basco ... Filipino Houseboy
Donna Mosley Donna Mosley ... Red Headed Girl
Paul Rylander Paul Rylander ... Harold the Bartender
Natasha Staples Natasha Staples ... Denver Librarian
Wayne Harrison Wayne Harrison ... Heilman
Yasuhiro Yoshimura Yasuhiro Yoshimura ... Japanese Vegetable Man (as Yoshimura Yasuhiro)
Sid Sid ... Willie the Dog
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Storyline

L.A. in the early 1930's: racism, poverty, and disease color the Bunker Hill neighborhood where Arturo Bandini, a lover of men and beasts alike, has arrived from Colorado to write the great Los Angeles novel. After six months and down to his last nickel, he orders a cup of coffee, served by Camilla Lopez, beautiful, self-possessed, and Mexican. Arturo gets advice, encouragement, and an occasional check from H.L. Mencken, so he keeps writing and he keeps seeing Camilla. But, he's mean to her for no apparent reason, so the relationship sputters. A housekeeper from back East suggests a way out of his jealously and fears. "Camilla Bandini": is it in the cards? Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Passion and ambition drive two dreamers in 1930s LA. Their love affair is ferocious and hot-blooded as they fight the city and themselves to make their dreams come true.

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some sexuality, nudity and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA | Germany

Language:

English | Spanish

Release Date:

13 April 2006 (Thailand) See more »

Also Known As:

Pregúntale al viento See more »

Filming Locations:

South Africa See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$68,779, 12 March 2006, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$742,614, 14 May 2006
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital | DTS

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The rights to the novel once belonged to Mel Brooks. However, the rights had lapsed. See more »

Quotes

Camilla: Look at the fog.
Arturo Bandini: An army of ghosts crawling on thier bellies.
Camilla: What are you talking about?
Arturo Bandini: The fogbank. It creeps in and hugs the water.
See more »

Connections

Features Dames (1934) See more »

Soundtracks

Blue Drag
by Josef Myrow
Performed by Django Reinhardt
Courtesy of JSP Records
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Interesting adaptation after a novel, but ultimately boring.
6 January 2007 | by sideriteSee all my reviews

The movie has the hallmark of old American writings, with lots of metaphors and big words for showing what is really everyday life. The script is original, unlike most of the films today, because is based on a book about the depression era in the US. The actors play very well and the images are very well done. I would venture to say the soundtrack was equally flawless, since it didn't bother me one bit (didn't really notice it, either).

So what was wrong about the movie? I don't know. Maybe the pace, since it was two hours long. Or the subject, which was ... smooth. I mean, there were no real bumps in it. Everything just went by itself. In the tradition of "road writers" the character is almost an observer, left to his own emotions, but incapable of acting. I can't say that characters weren't original, but more in the direction of weirdly annoying rather than interesting.

Bottom line: it's a drama. The romance itself is strong, not the diluted stuff you see nowadays, but I wouldn't call this a romantic movie. I suggest watching it when you feel philosophical or want something new, yet slow paced.


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