Los Muertos (2004)

LISANDRO ALONSO

Bil’s rating (out of 5):  BB

Argentina/France/The Netherlands/Switzerland, 2004.  4L, Fortuna Films, Slot Machine, Arte France Cinéma, Ventura Film.  Screenplay by Lisandro Alonso.  Cinematography by .  Produced by , .  Music by .  Production Design by Lisandro Alonso.  Film Editing by Lisandro Alonso, .  

, a non-professional actor playing himself, is released from prison and begins his long journey home. He takes a boat down the river of a beautiful, remote jungle on his way to being reunited with his daughter for the first time in years since he murdered his brothers and was sentenced to jail. He gets a shave and a haircut, he buys his daughter a blouse, visits a prostitute, and slaughters a goat that he finds on the way back. The location photography is superb, and the detail is impressive, but Vargas’s character is so bland that the experience is impenetrable. The film bravely lays bare the existence of South America’s poor and expertly calls attention to their plight without being manipulative or obvious, but more of it should have been described through Vargas’s personality itself.

Toronto International Film Festival:  2004

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