Progressive Dutch couple, Martin Verfondern and Margo Pool, had only one dream - to live off the land, far from the constraints and complications of the city. But, when they arrive in the crumbling, Spanish village of Santoalla, the foreigners challenge the traditions of the town's sole remaining family, igniting a decade-long conflict that culminates in Martin's mysterious disappearance. As this once forgotten landscape is thrust into the center of controversy, Margo finds herself searching not only for answers, but for the strength to persevere.
It s a decent documentary. The use of he music track is extremally heavy-handed and jarring but otherwise not bad.
I do feel the filmmakers, being urban New Yorkers, came down to much on one side of the conflict. They clearly sympathize more with the Dutch couple who while not rich have more resources and are able to bully their way in several interactions.
I suggest considering this crime as an allegory for colonialism. The rural family is essentially indigenous peoples at sustenance level and they are faced with newcomers who begin apparently wanting to not change the land, but eventually begin plans to completely change it with a plan to bringing in tourism and additional settlers. As well as questionable exploitation of resources (timber cutting the local forest in an unsustainable way).
The mystery presented by the filmmaker is not so much a mystery -- it is fairly clear what happened in the "disappearance." I think the other aspects are much more compelling and unfortunately inadequately explored.
4 of 19 people found this review helpful.
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