Imagining Argentina (2004)

Imagining Argentina

TOMATOMETER

——

AUDIENCE SCORE

Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.


Movie Info

In Buenos Aires during the Peron era, an Argentine playwright has a preternatural ability to see what will happen to people's loved ones -- many of whom are missing, or soon will be -- when he looks into their faces. Ultimately, he must turn this power inward, when his activist journalist wife disappears.

Rating: R (or violence/torture and brief language.)
Genre: Art House & International, Drama
Directed By:
Written By: Christopher Hampton
In Theaters:
On DVD: Oct 11, 2005
Runtime:
Arenas Entertainment

Cast


as Eurydice

as Orfeo/Enrico

as Pedro Augustin

as Carlos Rueda

as Cecilia Rueda

as Esme Palomares

as Silvio Ayala

as Teresa Rueda

as Policeman No. 2

as Gustavo Santos

as Amos Sternberg

as Mrs. Sternberg

as Esmerala Palomares
Show More Cast

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Critic Reviews for Imagining Argentina

All Critics (14) | Top Critics (5)

Despite its flaws, the film does the job in helping us imagine what that must be like for relatives and friends left behind.

Full Review… | August 20, 2004
San Francisco Chronicle
Top Critic

It's sad to see a film which, despite fine work in the various craft departments, fails to succeed on the most basic level.

Full Review… | June 29, 2004
Variety
Top Critic

The concept takes magical realism to a reductive, overtly literal level, trivializing the subject and the people the film tries so hard to memorialize.

Full Review… | June 10, 2004
Los Angeles Times
Top Critic

Like Life Is Beautiful before it, Imagining Argentina juxtaposes horrific images of torture and humiliation against gooey optimism and thinks it's saying something profound about human resilience in the process.

Full Review… | June 10, 2004
L.A. Weekly
Top Critic

Full Review… | June 24, 2006
Time Out
Top Critic

Gimmicky, pat, and just a tad too brutal at times, Imagining Argentina is a powerful statement rendered oddly ineffectual by a consistent desire to avoid controversy.

Full Review… | November 30, 2005
DVD Verdict

Audience Reviews for Imagining Argentina

½

It is, yes, well-intentioned but that doesn't compensate for its silly, heavy-handed execution full of artificiality, shallow dialogue and cartoonish villains - and Banderas' character acts so irrationally that I find it unbelievable that he is not killed before halfway through the story.

blacksheepboy
Carlos Magalh„es

Super Reviewer

½

In "Imagining Argentina," Cecilia Rueda(Emma Thompson), a journalist, is snatched off the street by armed men in Buenos Aires in 1976. Eight weeks later, her husband Carlos(Antonio Banderas), a theater director, is still at a loss as to her disappearance. While he does his best to take care of his teenaged daughter Teresa(Leticia Dolera) at home, at work things are falling apart as Enrico(Fernando Tielve), his leading man, wants to quit because his father has gone missing too. Carlos reassures him that things will be fine, as he also starts to sense the horrible truth behind his wife's disappearance.

There are some things to admire about the otherwise unremarkable movie "Imagining Argentina," such as the performances from Emma Thompson and Antonio Banderas who underplays nicely but is still no Ricardo Darin. For the most part, writer-director Christopher Hampton gives the potentially intriguing material a pedestrian and heavy handed treatment. To start, the movie would have been better served if it had taken place after the military government left power when Carlos could have provided answers to long lingering mysteries with history at a safe distance. As it stands, what is he supposed to do except provide confirmation of the worst fears?(It just goes to prove that some things are best left to the imagination.) In fact, he only makes things worse. In the end, the individual stories matter little in the grand scheme of things, as the epitaph confirms that this was not an isolated situation. That may be so but also invoking the Holocaust is taking things a little too far.

Harlequin68
Walter M.

Super Reviewer

I really enjoyed this film. No, it wasn't perfect or the best movie i've ever seen but i would watch it again.

elizarockgurl352
eliza bradford

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