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After giving this film some thought, I liked it a lot more after thinking about it. I thought the pacing was a bit slow and sometimes the romance and political tension seemed to butt heads, convoluting one story from going full steam ahead. However, each character is brimmed with unique features that really make you feel for them, and Bardem's relationship with his daughters ballet teacher really game full circle after thinking it over. The ending scene with his daughter and the beautiful song being played really captures the essence of the film as well
okay but pacing was a bit slow
Good film. The last scene, the music and images of his daughter broke my heart.
Bardem's performance alone is worth the watch and add in a good,tense story.
As a Latin American nation nears collapse under a highly organized terrorist movement, idealistic policeman Agustin Rejas faces the greatest challenge of his career: to catch the mysterious guerilla leader Ezequiel. The brains behind the bloody revolution that threatens to bring the government and entire country down, Ezequiel is as elusive as Rejas' superiors are corrupt--an irony not lost on Rejas, who left a career as a lawyer to try to find "a more honorable way of practicing the law." The military's response to the brutal tactics of Ezequiel's followers is equally ferocious, creating an atmosphere of mass panic. In the midst of the chaos, Rejas finds respite in Yolanda, his daughter's soulfully beautiful ballet teacher. But she, who appears to be a shelter from the storm, may in actuality be the storm's eye. As Rejas draws nearer to the man who considers himself to be the "Fourth Flame of Communism," he and the dancer he loves will be forced to choose between love, country and self.
Most memorable quote: " The soldiers rape every woman in the villages; it's not a revolution; it's a fuckaton"
An interesting political "thriller", and also directorial debut for Malkovic.
Directed by John Malkovich, this was written by Nicholas Shakespeare, based on his own 1995 novel of the same name. It was inspired by the Maoist uprising that happened in Peru in the 1980's, the group was known as the Shining Path, but their attempt for power was short lived. Although the film deviates from what really happened during the uprising, it's well made. In an unnamed South American country (maybe Peru), Detective Agustín Rejas (Javier Bardem) is assigned with hunting down the self-styled President Ezequiel (Abel Folk), who is a guerrilla leader hoping to overthrow the country's government. But he's a hard man to find, and Rejas gets distracted by Yolanda (Laura Morante), a ballet teacher who his daughter goes to. But, even though Rejas soon has strong feelings for Yolanda and that he finds solace in her from the hell going on outside, he soon discovers that Yolanda has a secret to hide. One which could compromise Rojas investigations and search, and put his life in danger. Malkovich's directorial debut is done with confidence and a deft hand, it has some good performances, with the actors alternating between English and Spanish. It was this film that helped bring Javier Bardem to international prominence and future Oscar-fame. But, it is well made and it's an old fashioned detective film.
Interesting, intriguing drama. On the surface a police-vs-terrorists/revolutionaries thriller, but it is much more than that. Emotional, human drama too.
Good performances by Javier Bardem and Laura Morante in the lead roles.
Only big negative is with the production quality - sound level is quite low.
This movie is about love - of country, of family, of right, the love between a man and a woman, sacrifice - for country, family, right, and the love between a man and a woman, seen from opposing sides, portrayed with good balance.
Aunque su ritmo se haga insoportablemente lento en partes y la historia de amor entre Rejas y Yolanda no sea nada interesante, Malkovich logra hacer un thriller policiaco bien estructurado, con maravillosas actuaciones y un ambiente misterioso en todo el filme.