Rojo (2018) Poster


User Reviews

Review this title
13 Reviews
Sort by:
Filter by Rating:
A draft of a film about a society in full depravity
FrenchEddieFelson25 June 2019
Yesterday evening, I took advantage of a French premiere within UGC Les Halles, in Paris, in the presence of the Argentine director Benjamín Naishtat who fluently spoke French with an almost-irreproachable accent. He confided us he was inspired by the detective movies (« polar » in French) of the 70's.

The film generally seems to be the mixture of two films from two distinct directors. The duels (all those involving Darío Grandinetti and / or Alfredo Castro) highlight an obvious cinematographic maturity based on an irreproachable photography and well-built dialogues. These scenes remind me of the excellent film El Clan (2015) which takes place a few years later, at the beginning of the 80's. Conversely, others scenes such as the rehearsal of the dance show are almost annoying and weirdly seem to come from another movie and from another director.

In summary, I'm rather disappointed with this slightly-muddleheaded movie, despite some excellent scenes. I'm nevertheless convinced that the next movie realized by Benjamín Naishtat will be better built. 4/5 of 10.
29 out of 37 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
********Late Developing
GManfred15 July 2019
Summer movie season has arrived in NYC. I can always tell by the higher quality of the foreign films that come to town (you can bet none of the Hollywood films are of high quality). "Rojo" is the best film I've seen since at least the winter and I can't remember which one that was. This one features good acting and camera work and with some thought-provoking allegory and symbolism.

Nutshell: An influential lawyer is slowly losing his ethical footing after a confrontation with an unbalanced patron at a restaurant, leading to a visit from an amateur detective investigating the disappearance of the patron. Give it a chance, because it is slow to get underway. But if you appreciate superior filmmaking there is always a reward with a good motion picture, and this is one example.

******** 8/10 - Website no longer prints my star rating.
8 out of 11 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
What is it and what it seems
frantastika26 July 2019
This film take me by surprise, original and captivating. Usually I read something about the film before heading to the cinema but in this case I saw the trailer and read the quickly description. I'm mentioning this because affects yours/my mood and expectatives about the film, before even seeing the film, and your opinion of it. This films plays with different styles and the narrative is a metaphorical one. The beginning of the film set the pace and there is some humour there when you least expected. However all this funny bit and pieces that I enjoyed are related to the fact that I speak spanish, and the rhythm of the conversations, the tone of how things are said, can lead to laugh and enjoy the absurd moment or see it as a truly dramatic one. There is a another layer that talk about how we "slowly get used to" corruption and crime as far as we don't get our benefits taken away and our placid lives interrupted... too much. If you wanna see a film about a crime and a mystery, this film may disappoint you... if you go with a good open mood, you may have a great time!
6 out of 9 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
boring and empty
mateoezequiellopez4 October 2020
It's a pretty well-acted movie with a good period context and pretty good photography. But the script is empty, very empty. The end comes to nothing and everything that happens during the movie ends in nothing. This is not good Argentine cinema, it is one of the weakest films I have seen.
2 out of 2 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Truly disjointed
random-707781 July 2019
I saw this at MOMA this past January and as I see it is up on video now I thought I'd summarize. The period in question is the nasty Isabel Peron dictatorship and the equally nasty dictatorship that replaced it. Disappearing people had been occurring in Latin America for hundreds of years and this period was no different. That is one of the underlying themes, and one of the few scenes that worked is a scene of local people going to a home and emptying it of anything of any value. It reminded me of a scene in Kazantzakis' Zorba where the moment the ageing widow dies, all of the town turns up to calmly steal everything not nailed down. The film also has some brief moments of great cinematography. It also is clearly influenced by Fargo, True Detective and some aspects of Scandinavian noir, although wihtout the depth, dark humor, or coherence.

Ultimately though. Rojo. is entirely incoherent. it not only fails to tell a meaningful story, it fails to tell an intelligible one. it is a tedious experience to watch it, with no reward at all for the audience.
18 out of 40 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Don't waste your time
bailadorafina9 February 2020
A bad, boring film which wastes the talent of Grandinetti. Make better use of your time by watching another film . This is total nonsense and includes a very gratuitous and grotesque scene where a bull is castrated, which is not in any way essential to the film's plot. Also included is a scene where a record with an A&M label plays on a record player while Camilo Sesto's Quieres Ser Mi Amante is heard. Camilo Sesto's music was never released on A&M. He recorded for Ariola, which later became part of the BMG conglomerate. A&M Records was an American record label that had absolutely no connection with Ariola or BMG, and is now part of the Universal Music Group. Por favor!
11 out of 23 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Maintains an Air of Suspense
larrys313 January 2020
Set in the 1970's in Argentina, this psychological thriller maintains an air of suspense throughout. Superb performances by Dario Grandinetti and Alfredo Castro, along with excellent writing and direction from Benjamin Naishtat.

Overall, I wasn't really thrilled with the ending here, but was very much engrossed in the film and interested as to how it was all going to turn out as the drama deepened.
4 out of 7 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Boring and senseless
profesorsaravi20 September 2020
Perhaps it's because I expected more from this movie. I knew and like the actors. The second scene, at the restaurant, was really promising. But from there on it became a senseless mess, moving really slowly to arrive to nowhere. You see, I'm an Argentinian who was 20 at the time the action is set, and despite minor mistakes, the political and social environment is well recreated. For this reason and for the good acting, I give it a 4/10. But still, I don't think it was even nearly worth of my time.
2 out of 4 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Boring and does not make sense.
matadorrrrrrrrr24 January 2021
I started watching this movie with the hopes that it would be somewhat good, but I was quickly disappointed. Like an argentine movie form the 70s, it is filled with lots of stuff that does not make sense to the main plot, or maybe that was the idea.

The scene with the magician dumbs down the situation with the people being kidnapped during a democratic government, so it is like taking the viewer by an idiot.

The dancing scenes do not add anything to the plot.

Then there were some errors, like a house with a split A/C (the medic's house), it is like they didn't care to find a proper 70s house. And I have my doubts about anyone having an A/C in a house in 1975 in Argentina.

Yeah, this was an awful movie, I don't even know why I am rating it with a 4.
0 out of 0 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Disturbing social x-ray of an era
danybur22 December 2020
It is 1975. Claudio (Darío Grandinetti) is the Doctor, a prestigious lawyer from a town in an unnamed province of Argentina, married to Susana (Andrea Frigerio) and with a teenage daughter. A tense incident with a stranger (Diego Cremonesi) in a town restaurant will be the first in a series of events that will call into question the Doctor's calm.

Actually, the first scene of the film is another, a powerful fixed shot over a house, in a scene of enormous eloquence. For those who do not know, or do not remember, in 1975 Isabel Perón ruled and Argentina was already devastated by the kidnappings and murders of the Triple A (Alianza Anticomunista Argentina), a parapolice organization linked to the Government, in a true advance of what that it would be state terrorism established by the civil-military dictatorship that overthrew Isabel in 1976.

Red is a remarkable and disturbing film. Its plot suffers an apparent drift by situations that seem disconnected but that in reality are integrated into a powerful and implacable X-ray of an era: violence (sometimes left out of the field), disappearances, dispossession, looting of the victims, the swindle, the silence, the imposture, the impunity. But all under a layer of apparent normality and within the framework of a province intervened to "restore" it.

Naishtat's film could be defined as a sociological and political black cop. Each scene is a necessary note (and never underlined) on the general picture, including the successful scene on a beach in Mar del Plata.

From the formal point of view, the filmic recreation of the time is remarkable, with that tone between faded and sepia that dominates photography and its red titles. There is a great use of still shots and beautiful wide shots in desert locations.

Grandinetti's very good performance, while the apparent over-acting of a character who later appears in charge of Alfredo Castro (the actor from I'm afraid of a bullfighter), also has its justification.

The school device could not be absent in this story, when a teacher (Susana Pampín) rehearses with Claudio's daughter and other classmates the dance Los Salvajes from the opera Las Indias Galantes by Rameau (a luxury of the soundtrack) for an act school and what he says to put them in position for the scene, in what constitutes a disturbing staging in the abyss.
0 out of 0 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Off to an amazing start, bud sadly declines a bit afterwards
Horst_In_Translation21 October 2020
Warning: Spoilers
"Rojo" is an Argentine movie that runs for minimally under 110 minutes and this one premiered back in 2018, so it is not really very new anymore, but still, it took until very recently for the movie to reach German theaters and there are probably many other countries where it hasn't even started yet. This on the one hand has to do with the pandemic, but on the other also generally with the distance between my country and the country of origin. The title is as simple as it gets and it includes the color you see in the background here. With the German title they added a lot more text to the title, namely the words "If everybody is silent, then nobody is innocent". Not sure I like that. it does soound a bit pretentious. Should have kept it simple. The film does not need these pseudo thrilles either. Of course, it is in the Spanish language from beginning to end. The writer and direcctor is Benjamín Naishtat and he as only 30 or so when he made this one, so pretty young still and nonetheless an experienced filmmaker who has worked in both fields, direction and screenplays since the age of 20 or minimally over. But this film we have here you could say is his biggest success so far and it will probably also result in him making a transition to Hollywood sooner or later. I hope that, no matter what he does and where he does it that the quality will be accordingly because the quality is strong, especially at the film's peak and the man could very well have another half century of movies ahead of him. I'm curious what we will be getting. Now as for this one here: I am not an expert from any perspective when it comes to Argentine films, so I cannot really elaborate on the cast. I see though that it was not just the film itself and the production values that scored success at the nationan film award ceremonies, but the cast also received many accolades. This most of all applies to Darío Grandinetti and he sure deserved it. He carried the movie and every time he was not on the screen and there are some lengthy sequences, the quality went south, so I was glad when he returned. Luckily it did not take too long most of the time. Actually he was so fine in some scenes that I am tempted to check out his other stuff. Some of it. I shall also mention Castro and Cremonesi because these two convinced me as well. the first half hour or so, maybe a little shorter, was without a doubt the film's highlight, while the latter scenes with Detective Sinclait may not have been equally strong, but still among the better moments the film had to answer.

Now I am deep in the story already. Let me say that the protagonist looked a bit like a mix of Gene Hackman Sean Connery to me here and there. Admittedly, sometimes not at all. Not the 90-year-old Hackman or Connery in 2020, but for example in the film for which they won their Oscars. But let's not drift too far away now. There was another actor/character here who reminded me a bit of another more famous English-language actor, but I don't remember who it was. Not too important either. What is important is the scene atg the restuarnt very early on and how it had me on the edge of my seat. One of the finest sequences I have seen all year and I have seen a lot. Immediately afterwards, the action moves out of the restaurant and we see the two men fighting again with the result of one of them beieng severly wounded. Is it possible to save his life? Maybe. Maybe not. The desert knows no mercy though. The next thing we get is a massive jump ahead in time. We find out a bit about much younger characters, who are linked with the male protagonist, but the lawyer is quickly confronted with his past again when he recognizes his attacker on a photo. Quite a coincidence, but it still worked. And while those scenes wih the young woman, the dancer, are not too bad as we see her being "abducted" while dancing, see her with her boyfriend and how her period keeps her from getting busy (or she only pretends) and find out about a young man stepping into a car, which he maybe better should not have, there is nothing as convincing here as those scenes with Grandinetti. He and the cop are doing a fine job for the most part in the second half of the film, even if how the cop knows about it all basically surprised me in the end, even if it sounds somewhat plausible. It just came out of nowhere and apparently while knowing what happened he does not really have any evidence and that is why he returns to Buenos Aires. I kinda feel the main character here also could have made a nice antagonist in a Columbo movie, but never mind. The title is also a surprising choice because the red you see on the picture/poster here on imdb was far from as frequent as it was throughout the movie. There is a blood spot on the wall, there is discussion about period blood and a few other moments too, but what stays most in mind in terms of the color red is of course this eclipse sequence. Not too long, but very haunting visually. Also somewhat funny how a local there seemed so used to it already and I am not sure if such a phenomenon the way it is depicted here is even possible at all. Was it all just a dream sequence. This would explain how the cop absolutely out of nowhere kknew all this and his wish to be taken to the desert felt also very random. I would have liked it better if, i.e. the audience, had been lead there more slowly, but it's alright. It was not bad from any perspective that it truly hurt the movie overall Besides, it is so packed with symbolisms and metaphors that you will always discover something new here I'm sure. Also it is necessary thhough for you to constantly keep your attention high because otherwise you can lose the connection as it was the case for me once or twice in the middle part. I still enjoyed it, soemtimes even the heck out of it like very early on. The waiter's behavior was also interesting. Or everybody else's in the room. Flawless acted and depicted. Not much else to say. I am surprised that this film was not Argentina's submission to the Oscars, but maybe it is eligible now in 2020? Or maybe they simply went with something else. I personally have no hesitation in giving this film a thumbs-up, even if I must say it is not as enthusiastic as it could have been. Still go see it. It's worth it, even if I would say that with the exception of the previously mentioned red eclipse sequence, it is just as good a watch on your television screen than it is in your local theater. No need to rush things really. However, positively recommended for sure.
0 out of 0 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Drying hard in the desert
kosmasp21 October 2020
This is not an easy movie to describe. And I think some historians have even more to say about the time this is playing (adding to the flavor of the country and the political backdrop). So there is a lot of baggage from the start, which some may be more aware than others. But even if you begin from zero, you can take a lot from this movie.

To do that, you have to be aware that the movie itself is not meant to excite you every other minute. Some may call it mundane, slow and even boring. Now that is valid depending on what your taste is like. So try not to judge someone who has the complete opposite opinion on this (or any other movie for that matter) than you. Overall I do think that the way this is shot and how it is played (excellent) made me go for the rating I chose. Again, it will not tickle everyone ... but those that will be intrigued by the characters and maybe the period and place it is playing, with everything that was going on back then ... they'll have fun - or the equivalent of it.
1 out of 2 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Argentine noir
guisreis20 June 2020
The beginning is awesome, there is a fantastic noir atmosphere, cinenatogphy is inspired, script is very wrll written (at least most of the time). However, the end is not in the same level of the film's development, and perhaps sone open parallel stoties should have had an end. Though, it is a good layered film and deals seriously with a horrible time in Latin American history.
1 out of 3 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.

See also

Awards | FAQ | User Ratings | External Reviews | Metacritic Reviews

Recently Viewed