Argentinian Cinema

Liverpool, 2008

With its rockabilly-infused title sequence coda that segues to medium shots of industrial interiors and, later in the film, a desolate winter landscape (not to mention a running motif of Farrel [Juan Fernández] taking occasional swigs from a vodka bottle that he has stashed in his duffel bag), Lisandro Alonso’s Liverpool, on the surface, suggests… read more »

Los Muertos, 2004

Los Muertos opens to the visually atmospheric and strangely surreal image of an unpopulated tropical forest, tracking sinuously (and disorientingly) through the lush wilderness, momentary revealing the dead bodies of two young people splayed amid the obscuring brush, before returning to the idyllic shots of foliage that becomes unfocused and diffused, imbuing the image with… read more »

I, The Worst of All, 1990

In seventeenth century Mexico, a conservative archbishop (Lautaro Murúa) and a politically influential viceroy (Héctor Alterio) share a polite toast to celebrate their respective appointments to the remote colony, away from the turmoil of the Inquisition in their homeland. The viceroy is eager meet an infamous cloistered nun at a local convent named Sor Juana… read more »

The Headless Woman, 2008

In retrospect, the swooning, haunted enigma of Lucrecia Martel’s The Headless Woman is revealed in the metaphoric image of a landscaper digging around in frustration along the perimeter of a garden bed, trying to make room for ornamental trees that the owner, Verónica (María Onetto) had purchased during a recent trip to the nursery. The… read more »

The Holy Girl, 2004

In the film’s understatedly realized catalytic encounter, an adolescent named Amalia (Maria Alché) stands in front of a musical instrument shop window in order to watch a musician perform on a theremin, as an inscrutable physician named Dr. Jeno (Carlos Belloso), visiting from out of town for a medical convention, casually places his hands in… read more »

The Magic Gloves, 2003

From a seemingly innocuous encounter between a gregarious musician who goes by the stage name Piranha and an impassive and unambitious cab driver, Alejandro, whom he recognizes (perhaps mistakenly) as his brother’s childhood friend, Martín Rejtman creates an effervescent comedy of errors as the well-intentioned Piranha and his equally enthusiastic wife attempt to reunite Alejandro… read more »

The Rolling Family, 2004

The Rolling Family is characteristic of the recent wave of Argentinean novo cinema to have hit international shores in the past few years: decentralized and organic narrative, ensemble hybrid casting of professional and non-professional actors that lends itself to muted expressivity (albeit with occasionally spirited outbursts) and contextually immersed, overlapping dialogue, and deliberately paced observations… read more »