Review: Viaje inesperado

Bathos extraordinaire.

by Benjamín Harguindey

Juan José Jusid is a venerable Argentine filmmaker who made some wonderful cult films in the 70’s and 80’s but only aced the local box office in the late 90’s and early 2000’s with folksy screwball comedies starring TV humorists and “it” couples. Viaje inesperado (“Unexpected Journey”) marks his return following an eight-year hiatus, but the movie is less than opportune.

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Review: Piazzolla, the Years of the Shark

Fishing for sharks and music.

by Iñaki Oñate

Piazzolla, los años del tiburón (Piazzolla, the Years of the Shark, 2018) starts with the moving image of the  Mar del Plata sea and the sound of an old recorded interview in which we listen to the voice of master musician Astor Piazolla. He explains the parallelism between playing his music live and fishing for sharks, his two favorite activities, saying they both demand immense physical exertion but offer an intense feeling of life and bliss.

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Review: El Ángel

A dark, intriguing character study.

by Benjamín Harguindey

El Ángel (“The Angel”), which made its acclaimed debut earlier this year at the Cannes film festival and now rises to the coveted million-spectator mark in its native Argentina, is loosely inspired in the year-long crime spree of Carlos Robledo Puch, one of Argentina’s most infamous serial killers and to date its longest-serving prisoner. He was only 20 when he was sentenced in 1973. Smug, vicious, coquettish and graced with the face of an angel, Puch remains one of the most alluring and puzzling criminal cases.

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Review: Necronomicón

At the bloopers of madness.

by Benjamín Harguindey

Subtitled “The Book of Hell” for dun dun dun effect, this Argentine attempt at homaging the mythos of horror writer H. P. Lovecraft is so misguided and tone-deaf in its execution that it makes for one embarrassing experience just waiting to be turned into a so-bad-it’s-good cult classic.

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Review: Animal

The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance.

by Benjamín Harguindey

Animal (2018) meshes one of Argentina’s most popular narrative themes – bottled-up outrage driving the long-suffering everyman to lash out against an unhelpful system – with one of its most controversial hot buttons, which is the exploitative relationship between social strata. To suggest it goes both ways, as does this movie, is taboo in Argentina.

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Review: Zama (2017)

Argentina’s best movie this year is kind of a drag.

by Benjamín Harguindey

Review of Zama, directed by Lucrecia Martel. Argentina.

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Review: The Long Night of Francisco Sanctis (2016)

A kiss and a flower.

by Antonio Cabello

Review of The Long Night of Francisco Sanctis (La larga noche de Francisco Sanctis), directed by Francisco Márquez and Andrea Testa. Argentina.

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