Archives For cartelera en lima

Now I understand why Undertow has been winning audience awards everywhere, it plays with your bobito (heart). And comparisons with Brokeback Mountain seem to be inevitable, since they are both dealing with a “gay” thematic in a setting not usually linked to “gay behavior” and they both have to deal with extramarital affairs, but they are little alike.

In Undertow, Miguel (Cristian Mercado) is a fisherman in the small town of Cabo Blanco, Peru, where he is having a baby with his wife Mariela (Tatiana Astengo). The model citizen, a good husband, and well-liked by everyone in town, no one knows that Miguel is having an extramarital affair with Santiago (Manolo Cardona), an artist who’s visited the place since he can remember.

As the melodrama unfolds, writer/director Javier Fuentes Leon doesn’t really take us nowhere we’ve never seen before — if you’ve seen many LGBT-themed films that is, except with that bit with Santiago’s destiny, where the Magic Realism finally kicks in. Ultimately, the film is just a love story, which on one side makes you wonder how well the story would be received if it didn’t have a gay relationship at its core, and on the other side you’re presented with a gay relationship that’s as normal as any heterosexual one.

Undertow will probably get placed next to other LGBT favorites in the following years — once more people get to watch it — right next to crowd’s faves like Brokeback Mountain, Shelter, Where the World Mine, Imagine Me & You, and Show Me Love.

The acting is strong by the three lead actors, being able to carry the whole film in its 100 minutes of running time. The strongest moment in the film was perhaps better condensed in the song by Celso Piña featuring Cafe Tacuba, Aunque No Sea Conmigo, used in the trailer and the film for the line of “Quiero que seas feliz, aunque no se conmigo” (I want you to be happy, even if it’s not with me).

Visually, the film delivers some hunting scenes — I still believe Ricardo de Montreuil (La Mujer de mi Hermano, Mancora) is visually better in his work with his advantage work on some very high profile music videos in Latin America… so how about a collaboration, guys?

3.5/5

Here’s some reading material ;P

La Casa Muda (2010) – aka. The Silent House
Genre: Horror, Suspense
Directed by: Gustavo Hernandez

The Silent House tells the story of Laura, a young woman, and her father who decide to install themselves in their country house to fix it for sale the next day. At night time, Laura hears noises, so her father decides to check it out without ever returning.

The film, directed by Gustavo Hernandez, is supposed to be based on a true story from the 40s — I can’t tell for sure, though. The Silent House is very stylish, with prime photography, and nice sound design. The acting is fine, and it all should make a pretty good film, except it isn’t that great. Sure, the film is supposed to be a horror suspense, and it is in the beginning, but it gets boring 30 minutes into the film with repetitive running around, and cheap thrills without moving the plot… or lack thereof.

In the end, there’s a big reveal… of sorts, which isn’t that surprising. However, the lack of plot is just too much for a one 78-min-long shot — was it really one shot? It seemed like a DV camera, so it’s possible. Like I said, The Silent House looks really REALLY good, but that’s it.

2.5/5

COMPETENCIA OFICIAL – FICCION

Screenings:
Monday 9 – 8pm – Cineplanet San Miguel – Sala 1
Tuesday 10 – 5.15pm – Cineplanet Alcázar – Sala 1
Wednesday 11 – 3pm – Cineplanet Alcázar – Sala 5
Thursday 12 – 8.30pm – Cineplanet Risso
Saturday 13 – 8pm – Centro Cultural Católica – Sala Azul

Agua Fría de Mar (2010) – aka. Cold Water of the Sea
Genre: Drama
Directed by: Paz Fabrega

Cold Water of the Sea tells the story of a young couple about to get married that go on a holiday trip to a tropical “paradise”, when they run into a girl who seems to be lost in the middle of the night. When they try to find her parents, the girl has long gone, which creates a bizarre connection between the girl and the woman.

Perhaps Cold Water of the Sea’s best feature is its locations in the “exotic” beaches of Costa Rica, because neither characters nor situations live up to anything. It’s not as if we wanted high tension drama on this, but we at least expected to sympathize with the characters. However, we end up knowing little about them, having spent a bit less than 1.30hr into these people.

A lot of the time is spent on the little girl, who tells the couple that her whole family has died in a transit accident, when in fact they were alive. Why is that? “Kids are like that” stated the mother, but why did she come up with something like that? She is certainly more than a spoiled brat, treated differently from her three older brothers by her dad. There are certainly hints of Electra Complex in the girl, but nothing is explored. Instead, director Fabrega decides to make some sort of distinction between social classes? Just because one side of the story is set with a poor family at the beach, and the other of a well-off young couple at a fancy resort?

2/5

COMPETENCIA OFICIAL – FICCION

Screenings:
Monday 9 – 3pm – Cineplanet Alcázar – Sala 5
Tuesday 10 – 8pm – Cineplanet Alcázar – Sala 5
Wednesday 11 – 8pm – Cineplanet San Miguel – Sala 1
Thursday 12 – 10pm – Centro Cultural Católica – Sala Azul
Saturday 14 – 8pm – Cineplanet Primavera – Sala 1

José Martí: El Ojo del Canario (2010)
Genre: Drama, Biography, Historic
Directed by: Fernando Perez

FYI: NOT official artwork.

Jose Marti: El Ojo del Canario tells the story of Jose Julian Marti Perez, the Cuban national hero and Latin American literature figure, between the dates when he was 9 years and 16 years old.

The film is more a representation of different things that could have had an effect in the way Jose Marti saw his motherland Cuba. Born from his Spanish father from Valencia and his mother from the Canary Islands, Jose Marti grew up a pretty privilege life getting to study at private school, learning mathematics, and reading.

He is bright and studious, and his mother and teacher want him to continue his studies, despite his father’s desire for him to start working right away. At a tender age, he goes off to work with him, and earns him praises for his King-styled handwriting. In school, he is very influenced by his best friend Fermin Valdez Dominguez, as well as his teacher Rafael Maria de Mendive. All of this, plus his exposure to slavery, which was still practiced in Spanish-ruled Cuba, made him want to yearn for a free Cuba.

The two leads who play Marti in the film — one as a child, and the other as 16-year-old Marti — are more than capable to carry the film. In fact, Damian Antonio Rodriguez who played kid-Marti reminded me of a young combination between James Franco (Milk) and Ben Whishaw (Perfume: The Story of a Murdered). Despite me not believing that Daniel Romero, playing 16-year-old Marti, looks anything like Rodriguez, there’s no denying the talent put into his characterization.

The film doesn’t feel all that connected, sometimes jumping scene from scene without any flow, however that doesn’t take away much from the acting and the story director Perez wanted to tell. Cuba is showcasing a very well put together biographic piece.

3/5

COMPETENCIA OFICIAL – FICCION

Screenings:
Monday 9 – 10.30pm – Cineplanet Alcázar – Sala 5
Tuesday 10 – 10.15pm – Centro Cultural Católica – Sala Roja
Wednesday 11 – 9.45pm – Cineplanet Alcázar – Sala 1
Saturday 14 – 3pm –  Cineplanet Alcázar – Sala 5

Hotel Atlântico (2009)
Genre: Drama, Comedy
Directed by: Suzana Amaral

Hotel Atlantico tells the story of an actor (Julio Andrade) – referred to as The Artist – who finds himself without a job, so he decides to embark himself into an aimless adventure, where he meets people and gets himself in unexpected… and even absurd situations.

Funniest thing is, all the supporting characters are probably more memorable than the protagonist himself. From the sacristan (Gero Camilo from Carandiru) and his aid, to Diana (Mariana Ximenes), the daughter of the doctor who wanted to be major. Though, Andrade had moments where he could have looked like the protagonist on Jesus Christ Superstar.

Perhaps, the most absurd of situations is how The Artist ends up in the hospital, and his meeting with Diana who happened to recognized him when he needed aid. But the most moving encounter is when he meets Sebastian or Sebastião (João Miguel).

2.75/5

COMPETENCIA OFICIAL – FICCION

Screenings:
Friday 6 – 10.15pm – Cineplanet Alcázar – Sala 8
Monday 9 – 7.30pm – Centro Cultural Católica – Sala Azul
Friday 13 – 10pm – Centro Cultural Católica – Sala Azul