Bil’s rating (out of 5): BB
Original title: El Niño Pez
Argentina/France/Spain, 2009. Historias Cinematograficas Cinemania, Ibermedia, Instituto Nacional de Cine y Artes Audiovisuales, Instituto de la Cinematografía y de las Artes Audiovisuales, MK2 Productions, Televisión Española, Wanda Visión S.A.. Screenplay by Lucia Puenzo, based on her novel. Cinematography by Rodrigo Pulpeiro. Produced by Jose Maria Morales, Luis Puenzo. Music by Andres Goldstein, Daniel Tarrab, Laura Zisman. Production Design by Mercedes Alfonsin. Costume Design by Julio Suarez. Film Editing by Hugo Primero.
Lucia Puenzo follows her directorial debut XXY with this dreary, unlikeable drama. The daughter of a wealthy politician is madly in love with her native maid, and the two of them save money for the day that they plan to run away. After the politician ends up murdered, his daughter goes in search of her now disappeared lover, travelling to her hometown and finding out secrets about her past. Puenzo has a touch for realism that she has inherited from her father (Luis Puenzo, who here also served as producer), but her plotting is confusing: the movie goes back and forth in time with very little prompting, and by the time you figure out what’s happening you’ll be too frustrated by its obscurity and the overly-shadowed cinematography to give it a chance. Great performances, though Inés Efron‘s skittishness at times really pushes the envelope.