Monday, May 9, 2011

Movie with Abe: Octubre (Capsule Review)

Directed by Daniel & Diego Vega Vidal
Released May 6, 2011

From the country of Peru comes this Cannes Grand Jury Prize winner and downer of a film, about a lonely money lender, Clemente, who has a baby dropped in his lap and absolutely no idea what to do about it. He spends most of his time hunting down the mother of his child, a prostitute from the local brothel who has up and disappeared, forcing him to conduct business with his clients with his child on his lap. Clemente’s pursuit of his former lover underlines his loneliness, as he is hopeless to find her on his town-to-town search and seems to garner pity from no one but a kind-hearted neighbor, Sofia, who begins serving as a nanny for him. To call “Octubre” engaging would be misleading, but it’s far more dynamic in pace than a film from Romania from the past few years. It’s clear that both the gruff, unlikeable Clemente and the sunny, excitable Sofia are complicated characters, and that the story also boasts hidden depth. Seeing a film from Peru is an interesting cultural experience, even if it’s hardly the most energetic and exciting film. It’s worth a look for fans of international cinema and some patience to endure a solemn story.


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