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Over the course of three films I have learned to expect nothing from Jaime Rosales other than the unexpected. Consequently he is a filmmaker in danger of alienating his audience with films that are bold and experimental and quite different from those of his contemporaries. But Rosales is far from simply an experimental filmmaker; his films also deliver a punch to the gut that can leave an audience reeling. I think he is one of the masters.
He chose to film "Dream and Silence" in widescreen black and white. It begins in silence and I wondered if, like "Bullet in the Head", this was going to be another wordless film, but no, Rosales wants us to really get to know his characters, even when keeping them at arm's length or even off screen. This is a film about family and a family forced to deal yet again with tragedy and loss; the black and white cinematography is entirely appropriate to the chilly feelings being expressed.
Rosales is also a magnificent director of 'actors'. Because of the documentary-like fashion in which Rosales films his players there is a naturalism to the performances rare in contemporary cinema which, of course, is only to be expected as he often uses non-professional actors 'playing' characters with the same names as themselves which is what he does here; everything flows organically. This really is a pretty immersive experience and it shouldn't be missed.
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