The Blonde One (Un Rubio) (2019)

MARCO BERGER

Bil’s rating (out of 5): BBB.5, 2019Screenplay by Cinematography by Produced by Marco Berger, , Music by Production Design by Film Editing by Marco Berger. 

Leo is a Buenos Aires carpenter who offer a vacant room in his apartment to unassuming single father Gabriel, whose light hair colour gives this film its title. By day they work together at the same shop, at night Gabriel sits quietly as Leo entertains his friends on his couch, drinking beer and watching soccer on television. One evening before heading out for drinks, lengthy glances between these roommates results in their spending the evening together in bed, which then leads to a prolonged affair that increases in tenderness and affection, but only when they’re actually having sex. The rest of the time, Gabriel is relegated to being Leo’s secret sidepiece, ignored when Leo is spending time with his girlfriend or other friends (or even, in one unhappy instance, with another young man). Marco Berger’s latest foray into the wordless, heady atmosphere of male sexual desire goes the next step further from his previous films, which always end with consummation after the extended torture of denial and repression between characters. Here the physical connection is made early and it’s the aftermath that is examined, and Berger finds that even when forbidden objects of desire are conquered and consumed, there is still plenty of room for loneliness and disillusionment.  It’s so far Berger’s most explicity erotic film, in which he shows as much skill for filming the delicious indulgence of sex as he usually does showing its delay, and the actors are, as is usual with Berger’s films, as emotionally endearing as they are physically appealing, giving quiet and subtle performances that portray the dangerous insecurity of one and the painful longing of the other without ever overplaying their hands.

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