Clandestine Childhood (2013)
Argentina, 1979. After years of exile, Juan (12) and his family come back to Argentina under fake identities. Juan's parents and his uncle Beto are members of the Montoneros Organization, which is fighting against the Military Junta that rules the country. Because of their political activities they are being tracked down relentlessly, and the threat of capture and even death is constant. However, Juan's daily life is also full of warmth and humor, and he quickly and easily integrates into his new environment. His friends at school and the girl he has a gigantic crush on, Maria, know him as Ernesto, a name he must not forget, since his family's survival is at stake. Juan accepts this and follows all of his parents' rules until one day he is told that they need to move again immediately, and leave his friends and Maria behind without an explanation. This is a story about militancy, undercover life, and love. The story of a clandestine childhood. (c) Film Movement … More
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Critic Reviews for Clandestine Childhood
Ávila can't quite thread the needle between telling his personal story and connecting it to larger social currents.
'Clandestine Childhood'' is the impressive first feature by Argentine director Benjamín Avila.
When a filmmaker proves as reluctant as Mr. Ávila to speak up about the past, to engage with its full complexity, it can be hard to hear what he's saying.
The calmer scenes are staged in staid and somewhat clunky fashion, but the graphic animation depicting the worst moments is starkly effective.
Outré flourishes don't fully lift the story past the limitations of innocence-lost storytelling.
A charming, involving first feature, Clandestine Childhood muscles its familiar coming-of-age material into something more vibrant and urgent than the usual.
A solemn reverie about an urban guerrilla mother in revolutionary struggle, and the maternal ideal as ambivalent myth and martyr. Giving rise to the contemplation of art as an act of necessity, and the creative journey of the life of an idea in a film.
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